A social support intervention to reduce intentions to drop-out from youth sport: the GAA super games centre

David Lavallee*, Daragh Sheridan, Pete Coffee, Pat Daly

*Corresponding author for this work

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Research has highlighted that drop-out from youth sport has emerged to become a global trend with drop-out rates exceeding 30% in some countries. This study aimed to investigate the effect of a change in perceived support on intentions to drop out from youth sport at the end of a social support intervention. A pre-intervention examination of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) in 2012 identified a 19.38% drop-out rate involving 3,491 participants between the ages of 12-16 years. A psychosocial intervention developed for the GAA called the Super Games Centre was delivered and evaluated over a 24-week period to 103 participants. The findings demonstrated that higher perceived available support was significantly associated with lower levels of intentions to drop out at the end of the intervention. Furthermore, social identity emerged as a significant mediating factor in explaining the association between changes in perceived support and intentions to drop out. A post-intervention examination in 2018 found that the GAA had established 95 Super Games Centres since 2015, and this has led to an increase in 7,012 new participants between the ages of 12-16 years. Future research and implications for social support intervention methodology are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-17
Number of pages7
JournalPsychosocial Intervention
Issue number1
Early online date10 Sep 2018
Publication statusPublished - 2019


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