Epistemological Paradigms in Physical Education and Sport Research Practice in Greece
Keywords:Αssumptions, research philosophy, theory and practice, physical education and sport science
The present article discusses the sport science epistemological paradigms as these are reflected upon research practice in Greece. The content is organized in five sections. Initially the necessity for every sport scientist to expose her/his assumptions, claims and beliefs through a constant and fertile dispute aiming to support the scientific construction of physical education and sport is underlined. In the second section, a description is offered of the range of ways within which contemporary science acts. A metaphor is used here to present the three epistemological paradigms to which every current research appertains according to the
assumptions that either explicitly or implicitly govern it. In the third section specific examples of research conducted within the Greek physical education and sport fields are presented. These examples are representative of each epistemological paradigm. In the case a deficiency in Greek studies was identified, research examples from abroad are used to fully elaborate on the epistemologies; and the link between the epistemological assumptions and research practice is comprehensively addressed. In section four, queries that ultimately aim to challenge the reader to critically reflect upon the theoretical issues of research are offered. This type of inquiring is expected to reveal the necessity toward an understanding of how theory and practice are linked in the research field of sports. In the last section an appropriate stance for the researcher is proposed via the one’s openness toward the epistemological assumptions and the criterion of personal choice.