Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Applied Science Honours


Faculty of Science and Technology

First Advisor

Dr Lynn Embrey


The role of the sports team captain is often underestimated in terms of the responsibility involved, the essential attributes and knowledge required. The qualities and expertise of the captain can potentially have a great effect on the performance of the team. To date there has been very little research conducted on the role and experiences of the sports team captain. The purpose of this study is to outline the role and the experiences of the sports team captain, with particular emphasis on the responsibilities, the influencing factors and the power of the captain. Ten former or current captains of state and national sports teams currently residing in Perth, Western Australia, were each interviewed using an open ended, flexible interview schedule. A combination of inductive and deductive content analysis of the verbatim interview transcripts was used to establish common and unique themes pertaining to the role, attitudes and experiences of the sports team captain. The major theme to emerge from the data was "be yourself''. The findings demonstrated that· the duties of the captain are primarily determined by the role and nature of the coach. Other factors including the nature and profile of the sport, type and level of competition, number of support personnel, team stability and length of the playing season also influenced the extent of the captain's responsibilities. With ii the exception of cricket, the captain has little authority or involvement in team selection and strategies. The major duties of the captain involve (a) representing the team in either a public relations capacity or in discussions with the coach and management, and (b) identifying and solving problems within the team.