A qualitative study of elite Canadian ice dancers

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Tomietto, Deanna M.
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The purpose of this study was to examine qualitatively and describe the world of the elite ice dancer including such topics as lifestyle, training schedules, time commitment, support networks, relationships, goals, other activities, responsibilities, and pressures. This study also investigated the components that create a conducive training environment for these athletes. The participants were 12 elite ice dancers and three head coaches at two training sites in southern Ontario. In-depth interviews were completed using an interview schedule developed by the researcher's personal experiences and also a review of literature. Observation data were collected during training sessions before and after interviews were conducted, and were used to evaluate or validate information obtained from the interviews. Analysis of the data was based on transcriptions of the interviews, and was both inductive and emergent in nature. From the interview and observation data, themes shared by the participants emerged into five major categories: Factors Necessary for Success; Coaching and Technical Aspects; Personal Benefits; Problematic Issues; and Social Aspects. (Abstract shortened by UMI.)