Revista Egitania Sciencia - ICESP Special Edition | ARTICLE

Title: INDIVIDUAL AND COLLECTIVE CREATIVITY IN YOUNG FOOTBALLERS

Author: Bruno Gonçalves, Sara Santos, Nuno Mateus, Jaime Sampaio, Nuno Leite e Alexandra Silva

Publication: Revista Egitania Sciencia - ICESP Special Edition

Abstract:
The present study aimed to (i) identify a potential relationship between players’ creativity in individual and collective settings and (ii) identify the effects of a training program in young footballers’ creative and tactical performance. The sample was composed by a total of 25 football players (age 13.9 ± 0.6 and 5.4 ± 2.1 years of practice) competing in the U15 category, randomly distributed across a control (n=12, age 13.8 ± 0.6 and 5.4 ± 2.2 years of practice) and an experimental group (n=13, age 14.0 ± 0.7 and 5.3 ± 2.2 years of practice). The experimental group was submitted to a 12 week training program based on the principles of Nonlinear Pedagogy and Differential Learning. Creative performance was assessed in individual (1 vs 1) and collective (5 vs 5 plus goalkeepers) tasks. The collective task was organized in blocks, changing the team’s formation in each game. Both tasks were filmed and, in order to evaluate the tactical performance, every field player was equipped with a portable GPS (SPI PRO XII, GPSports, Australia). Observational (creativity score in the collective task, average of creativity scores, flexibility and fluency) and positional variables (team centroid distance and approximate entropy) were analyzed. Effect size statistic was used to compare the more and less creative players at pre and post-test. Significant differences were identified for the average of creativity scores, which registered a moderate effect in the pre-test and a very large effect in the post-test. These results suggest that that the most creative players in the 1vs1 situation keep their scores high when they enrol in the 5 vs 5 plus goalkeepers game, meaning that there might be a relationship between the players’ creative performance in individual and collective settings. The improvements on the effect from pre to post-test might indicate a positive impact of the training program on players’ creative performance.

Keywords: Creativity, Football, Nonlinear Pedagogy, Differential Learning




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