Nonverbal communication in elite football

Ingrid Lian (phd) and Geir Jordet (supervisor)



The aim of the project is to investigate how elite level footballers communicate nonverbally during games by doing game analyses. Furthermore, investigations will be done to see if there are correlations between nonverbal communication/behavior and other variables such as performance, cultural differences, and contextual factors (e.g., player position, game location). In addition, different methodological approaches of studying nonverbal communication/behavior in football will be investigated. Both men and women will be analyzed.


In the current project there are four planned studies. In three of the studies, quantitative data will be gathered by doing game analysis where trained coders will register football players’ nonverbal behavior. In addition, there will be one qualitative study where players and coaches will be interviewed in order to gain a deeper understanding of what players (and coaches) think regarding nonverbal communication/behavior