Questioning accepted social practice. The case of football in Physical Education

By Thibaut Hebert

The aim is to analyze the representations of football, one of the most popular social practices, through an enquiry carried out among teachers (n = 86) and middle-school pupils (n = 116), i.e. what are the connotations and do the representations of football affect the way the sport is taught in schools? On the whole, results show that teachers do not like football as much as pupils do. In the framework of PE in schools, teachers even admit that they do not like teaching it. Reasons evoked include the relationship with rules and authority, having to use mixed teams in a predominantly masculine sport, or the dichotomy between playing football outside school (a competitive and individualistic approach) and the more cooperative approach that PE staff try to encourage.


  • sport and physical education
  • representations
  • football
  • social practice
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