Nicole LaVoi

Nicole M. LaVoi

Associate director, Tucker Center for Research on Girls & Women in Sports
Education specialist—School of Kinesiology
Graduate School faculty

203 Cooke Hall
1900 University Ave. SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455

Voice: 612-626-6055
Fax: 612-626-7700

Twitter: @DrSportPsych
Videos: Dr. LaVoi's Teaching Philosophy
Dr. LaVoi talks about The 2007 Tucker Center Research Report

Dr. LaVoi gives a Pecha Kucha on "Developing Physically Active Girls"
Dr. LaVoi provides practical tips on "How to Give a Good PreZENtation"

Areas of specialization

Sport psychology, sport sociology, girls and women in sports

Research interests

Nicole M. LaVoi, Ph.D. is the Associate Director of the Tucker Center for Research on Girls & Women in Sport, Co-Coordinator of the Minnesota Youth Sport Research Consortium, and instructor in the area of Physical Activity Social & Behavioral Science. Dr. LaVoi’s multidisciplinary research includes influences from sport & exercise psychology, sport sociology, sport management, youth development, child development, moral development, and feminist studies. LaVoi’s research has focused on the relational qualities of the coach-athlete relationship, the affect of adult behaviors (parents and coaches) in youth sport on children and youth, the emotional experiences of youth sport parents, the physical activity of underserved girls, the structural and personal barriers experienced by female coaches in youth sport, and media representations of girls and women in sport.

Dr. LaVoi joined the University of Minnesota faculty in the School of Kinesiology in 2005. From 1994 to 1998 she was an Assistant Professor of Physical Education and Head Tennis Coach at Wellesley College in Wellesley, MA. After returning to University of Minnesota for her doctoral work from 1998 to 2002, she took a position as a Research & Program Associate in the Center for Ethical Education at the University of Notre Dame where she helped initiate and develop the Play Like a Champion Educational Series for parents and coaches from 2002-2005. Dr. LaVoi has published and presented on the many facets of her research and outreach in a variety of contexts across the country—most frequently delivering research-based educational workshops to youth sport coaches and parents. Currently she is developing We Coach: Educating & Empowering Through Sport which will provide professional development and networking opportunities for female coaches in interscholastic and youth sport. She was the co-editor and a contributing author of The 2007 Tucker Center Research Report: Developing Physically Active Girls, was recently commissioned to contribute to the Team Up For Youth Monograph Series pertaining to Sports-Based Youth Development for Underserved Girls, in addition to authoring many other journal articles, and book chapters.

Academic degrees

  • B.A., Gustavus Adolphus College, 1991. Majors: health fitness and communications
  • M.A., kinesiology, University of Minnesota, 1995. Emphasis: sport psychology
  • Ph.D., kinesiology, University of Minnesota, 2002. Emphasis: sport psychology, sport sociology

Professional experience

  • University of Notre Dame. Notre Dame, IN., director of sports programming, Center for Ethical Education and The Mendelson Center for Sports, Character & Community. 2002-2005.
  • Wellesley College, Assistant Professor of physical education & head women’s tennis coach, Department of Physical Education, Recreation and Athletics. Wellesley, MA. 1994-1998.
  • Carleton College, assistant women’s tennis coach. Northfield, MN. 1992-1993.

Selected publications

LaVoi, N.M., & Kane, M.J. (in press). Sport Sociology for Sport Management. In P. Pedersen, L. Thibault, & J. Quarterman (Eds.), Contemporary Sport Management (4th ed.). Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.

Daniels, E., & LaVoi, N.M. (in press). Athletics as Solution and Problem: Sports Participation for Girls and the Sexualization of Female Athletes. In T.A. Roberts & E.L. Zubriggen (Eds.) The Sexualization of Girls and Girlhood. New York: Oxford University Press.

Wiese-Bjornstal, D., LaVoi, N.M., & Omli, J. (2009). Developmental influences on sport skill learning and performance in children and youth. International Olympic Committee (IOC) Medical Commission Handbooks of Sports Medicine and Science: Sport Psychology Volume, (pp. 97-112). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley-Blackwell.

Omli, J., & LaVoi, N.M. (2009). The perfect storm: Background anger in youth sports. Journal of Sport Behavior, 32(2), 242-260.

LaVoi, N.M., & Babkes Stellino, M. (2008). The influence of perceived parent created sport climate on competitive youth male hockey players’ good and poor sport behaviors. Journal of Psychology: Interdisciplinary & Applied, 142(5), 471-495.

Omli, J., LaVoi, N.M., Wiese-Bjornstal, D. (2008). Towards an understanding of parent spectator behavior at youth sport events. Journal of Youth Sports, 3(2), 30-33.

LaVoi, N.M., Omli, J., Wiese-Bjornstal, D. (2008). Minnesota PLAYS™ (Parents Learning About Youth Sports): A research-based parent education solution. Journal of Youth Sports, 3(2), 14-16.

LaVoi, N.M., & Wiese-Bjornstal, D. (2007). Girls’ Physical Activity Participation: Recommendations for best practices, programs, policies and future research. In M.J. Kane & N.M. LaVoi (Eds.), The Tucker Center Research Report, Developing physically active girls: An evidence-based multidisciplinary approach (pp.1-5).Minneapolis, MN: The Tucker Center for Research on Girls &Women in Sport, University of Minnesota.

LaVoi, N.M. (2007) Expanding the interpersonal dimension: Closeness in the coach-athlete relationship. A response to the commentary by Sophia Jowett. International Journal of Sport Science & Coaching, 2(4), 519-521.

Shields, D.L., LaVoi, N.M., Bredemeier, B.L. & Power, C.F. (2007). Predictors of poor sportspersonship in youth sports: An examination of personal attitudes and social influences. Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology, 29, 747-762.

LaVoi, N.M., Buysse, J., Maxwell, H.D., & Kane, M.J. (2007). The influence of occupational status and sex of decision maker on media representations in intercollegiate athletics. Women in Sport & Physical Activity Journal, 15(4), 32-43.

LaVoi, N.M., Becker, E., & Maxwell, H.D. (2007). “Coaching Girls”: A content analysis of best-selling popular press books. Women in Sport & Physical Activity Journal, 15(4), 8-20.

Professional memberships

© 2014 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer
Last modified on 7/25/2013