Meta Theory of Sport Science


Meta Theory of Sport Science

Meta Theory of Sport Science comprises four basic question. All the question will explain below :
  1. What is the aim and objective of sport science?
  2. What is the body of knowledge of sport science?
  3. What is research methodology of sport science?
  4. What is the mutual relationship between theory and practice in sport science?
These four questions are constitutive for a meta theory in general and for the attempt to describe the self understanding of a scientific field in specific, in this case of sport science. Within the four central chapter of this analysis the attempt is made to formulate an answer to these four questions. Within each main chapter "preconsiderations (input)" (Introduction) are given at the beginning and "postconsiderations (output)" conclude the chapter.
Meta Theory of Sport Science

Section 1 (Aims and Objectives of Sport Science)

The question is "What is function of sport science?". This is an extremely normative aspect, which is important for the perception of the scientific field. Four different dimensions will be analyzed in regard to this question, in order to give comprehensive and well-balanced answer. The historical dimensions can give an  insight under generic perspectives. The comparative dimensionmay generate interesting facts due to a socio-cultural comparison across different nations. The status quo or present-day dimension relates to the current situatuon and a futuristic dimension can provide some perspectives for the future.

Section 2 (The Body of Knowledge of Sport Science)

The question is "What is content of sport science?". This question is fundamental for the understanding of a scientific field. There are many possibilities for describing and organizing the body of knowledge of sport science. A model comprising theory fields and subject fields of sport science will be presented in detail. With this model a dual approach towards the understanding of sport science is used, namely theory field - and subject-field-orientation, which is necessary to get a comprehensive view of the both.

Section 3 (Research Methodology of Sport Science)

The question is "What is the process of gaining scientific knowledge in sport science?". In order to generate scientific knowledge, appropriate procedure should be followed step by step. This is called a logical research sequence, which will be described in a six step model. The quality of research results is largely dependent on how these different steps have been followed. A so called "young science" has to be particularly conscious of this part of a meta-theory : in other words, it is important to develop good strategies for the research process in consideration of the specific characteristic of the field of movement, play and sport.

Section 4 (Research Methodology of Sport Science)

The question is "What is practice-theory and theory-practice-paradigm?". The amount of available scienctific evidence has become quite large in recent years. A lack in transferring knowledge to the practical application has become increasingly. Therefore, this fourth aspect of a meta-theory is of high actuality apparentfor sport science. In this connection it is important to distinguish three different meanings of practice an regard to sport science, namely practice to sportaction, as professional practice in different sportspesific profesional fields and as the sum of the social reality of sport, which serves as target point for sport science research in a broad sense. Thus, these theory-practice (and vice versa) relationships have developed into a very fundamental issue of a scientific (meta theory), in this case of sport science.

At the end of this analysis "concluding considerations" are given. An attempt is made to summarize the main results, to give a critical evaluation, to indicate future directions for the scientific field called sport science, and to mention institutions and organizations which are important for the present status and future development of sport science.