7th International Teaching Games for Understanding (TGfU) Conference

Tuesday 5th - Thursday 7th July 2022

The TGfU Conference 2022 will be a world-leading, international, inclusive event for all teachers, sports coaches, academics, researchers, pre-service teachers and students interested in games-based approaches (GBA).

Celebrating 40 years since Bunker and Thorpe’s (1982) seminal publication, the 7th international conference is coming back to the UK for just the second time.  We will celebrate the work of TGfU and GBA practitioners from across the world.  We already have commitments from over 30 different countries spanning Europe, Australasia, South America, North America, Asia and Africa.

TGfU2022 will also feature cutting-edge content for practitioners, students and academics.  Specifically, this event will impact the advancement of games-based approaches through a particular focus on inclusive sport, scientifically-informed approaches, technologically-advanced practice, teacher/coach education and cross-cultural domains. 

Conference structure:

Day 1 (Tuesday 5th July 2022): Celebrating 40 years of TGfU and GBA – Cutting-edge research and practice

Day 2 (Wednesday 6th July 2022): TGfU and games-based approaches for teachers

Day 3 (Thursday 7th July 2022): Sports coaching and Games-Based Approaches

The overarching academic themes for the event will be: 

  • Inclusivity
  • Integration
  • Implementation

Key features:

  • World class keynote speakers who discuss the latest thinking and research related to games-based approaches
  • Expert practitioners who will deliver a range of extended seminars focussed on the integration and implementation of inclusive games-based approaches to teaching and coaching
  • Extensive time for collaborating, discussion and networking
  • A broad range of evidence-based practical sessions
  • A wide variety of ways to share your work (including traditional oral presentations, practical sessions, and several others)
  • An extensive cultural programme including local tours, fun activities and a gala dinner
  • Daily opportunities to get physically active

For email enquiries please contact TGfU@worc.ac.uk



 The online booking form is now available.  This online booking form is for debit/credit card payments only.  If you have any queries please contact TGfU@worc.ac.uk

Very Early Bid Registration Closes: Friday 7th January 2022

Early Bird Registration Closes: Friday 11th February 2022

Presenting Authors Registration Closes: Friday 25th March 2022

Registration Closes: Monday 6th June 2022

  Very Early BirdEarly Bird Standard 
 Full Delegate  £395  £425  £525
 Student Full Delegate*  £200  £215  £265

*To confirm you are entitled to a student rate, please register using your university email address. 

Further conference rates will be published in due course.  Please contact TGfU@worc.ac.uk if you have any queries in the meantime. 

Terms & Conditions/Cancellation Policy for Conferences and Events    

1. If a delegate is unable to attend an event for any reason they may substitute, by arrangement with the event administrator, someone else from the same institute/organisation.  

2. If a delegate is unable to attend, and is not in a position to transfer his/her place to another person, the following refund arrangements apply:   

  • Bookings cancelled more than 30 days before the event will receive a full refund
  • Bookings cancelled less than 30 days before the event will not be eligible for a refund   

3. Cancellations made by delegates after a failed visa application will be refunded in full upon receipt of evidence of the visa refusal.   

Refunds will be made in the following ways:   

  • For payments received by credit or debit cards, the same credit/debit card will be refunded
  • For all other payments, a bank transfer will be made to the payee nominated account.     

Event Cancellation   

We will do our best to ensure that the event goes ahead, but we reserve the right to cancel at any time.  If we do so (other than for reasons outside of our control), we will refund your event fee in full but will have no further liabilities to you.  In particular we will not meet the costs of any pre-booked travel or external accommodation. 


A detailed programme will be published following the scrutiny of abstracts.  In the meantime here are some snippets of the programme, this document will be updated regularly. 

TGfU - A Football Perspective: An inclusive approach from the FA (part of Day 3)

TGfU and game-based approaches to coaching are an integral part of the football coaches’ toolbox.  The Football Association (FA) and the University of Worcester invite you to a unique opportunity to explore how TGfU and other game-based approaches might be creatively and innovatively integrated into the delivery of grassroots football.  Delivered by key members of the FA grassroots team, this day will help coaches understand how game-based approaches sit alongside the England DNA and within grassroots coach education.  The day will feature both theory-based and practical workshops as well as opportunities for networking and asking questions of FA staff.  All grassroots football coaches will find this development day an invaluable resource in enhancing their understanding and application of TGfU and game-based approaches.



Call for Abstracts

The call for abstracts is now open and will close at 3pm (GMT) on Friday 10th December 2021.  The abstract submission link can be accessed here and a downloadable copy of the information below can be accessed here. 


There are several ways to present your work at TGfU2022 and the various options available to you are outlined here.  Your abstract must be aligned either to one of the three major themes and/or to one of the four sub-themes which together form the focus areas of the conference.

The three major themes are inclusion, integration and implementation.


Inclusion is a universal human right and compels individuals and institutions to embrace all people irrespective of, for example, disability, gender, race or religion.  At the heart of an inclusive practitioner lies the desire to give equal access, parity of opportunity and to eliminate discrimination at all levels.  Inclusion represents one of the most pressing contemporary challenges for practitioners across the globe and is particularly pertinent in the fields of physical education and sport.  


Integration necessitates consideration of how TGfU and Games-Centred Approaches (GCA) can be helpful models across different contexts and cultures.  This theme explores how TGfU and GCA models have been integrated into established systems such as formal coach education provision and into increasingly diverse cultural applications.  This theme explores how such approaches have been put into operation, the benefits that have been enjoyed and the challenges involved with embedding what are often quite radical changes to pedagogic practice.  This theme considers how these models have been applied and further suggests how the reach and influence of TGfU and GCA might continue to grow across the global sports pedagogy community.       


The implementation of TGfU and GCA continues to feature strongly within the pedagogic literature.  This theme builds on two areas of contemporary work which have resonated strongly across the discipline in recent years.  The first addresses the connection between complexity thinking, ecological systems and TGfU/GCA.  The second area considers the increasing focus on the cognitive, affective and physical activity-related benefits of deploying a TGfU/GCA approach.  The global shift towards physical education and competitive sport as a medium through which to enhance participant mental health and tackling the widespread deficit in physical activity ensure that such areas of focus will grow substantially in the coming years.

In addition to these major themes, the sub-themes for the conference comprise:

  • Scientifically-informed approaches
  • Technologically-advanced practice
  • Teacher and coach education
  • Cross-cultural domains

Following submission, each abstract will be peer-reviewed by two members of the scientific committee and you will be notified by email of our decision.

Reviewing criteria for all types of submission:

  • Clarity of focus
  • Originality and/or rigour of the research or contribution to practice
  • Significance of the research for TGfU/GCA practice, policy or theory

Types of abstract submission:

1.  Traditional oral presentation

Oral presentations will feature a 15 minute delivery followed by up to five minutes of questions from the audience.  The focus on a traditional oral presentation is normally to disseminate the results of a single research project.  Each oral presentation will be organised into a theme strand to form a parallel session.

2.  Symposium or workshop

Proposals are invited to host a symposium or workshop comprising a number of contributing presenters.  The focus of a symposium or workshop could, for example, be to disseminate a body of work from a research team or bring-together related work from diverse international contexts.  Each symposium or workshop is limited to 75 minutes and a minimum of four presenters must contribute.  The symposium or workshop could feature practical and/or theoretical elements.  There is no maximum number of presenters.

3.  Practical session

A small number of abstracts will be accepted to deliver practical sessions.  The focus of practical sessions should be to showcase new practical ideas and should strongly reflect one of the conference’s main themes of inclusion, integration or implementation.  Practical sessions should be founded on approaches which are evidence-based and which have been subject to academic scrutiny.  Practical workshops will run for 75 minutes and should be led by at least two presenters.

4.  Five slides in five minutes

This is another new addition to the TGfU conference and features quick-fire dissemination of your research.  As the title suggests, you will deliver a five minute presentation supported by a maximum of five PowerPoint slides.  The presentation will be followed by a maximum of two minutes of questions from the audience.  Following the presentations, an extended discussion and networking time will be facilitated to enable further explorations of the studies presented.

Please contact TGfU@worc.ac.uk if you have any queries. 

Keynote Speakers


Professor Linda Griffin

Learner Engagement through Appreciation and Understanding  

Linda is a Professor of sport pedagogy in the College of Education at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Her area of research and scholarly interests over the past 28 years have focused on a games-centered approach to teaching and learning sport-related games. A games-centered approach links tactics and skills by emphasising the appropriate timing of skill practice and application within the tactical context of the game. The basic assumption of the approach is that students learn best if they understand what to do before they understand how to do it. The overall goal is to increase students’ tactical awareness, which is the ability to identify tactical problems that arise during a game and to respond appropriately. Responses might be on-the-ball skills, such as passing and shooting, and off-the-ball movements, such as supporting and covering. Linda has numerous publications (i.e. textbooks, edited books, book chapters, peer-reviewed journal articles) and has been keynote speaker, made presentations and facilitated workshops on this topic. Linda has received several awards and honors UMass Amherst Exceptional Merit Honor, 2015, Frostburg State University Wellner Scholar, 2012, AERA SIG: Research on Teaching and Learning in Physical Education, Exemplar Paper Award; 2008, and National Association of Sport and Physical Education, Council on Professional Preparation in Physical Education, Physical Education Teacher Education Honor Award, 2005.


professor daniel memmert

Professor Daniel Memmert 

Tactical Creativity in Sports – TCA 7.0 

In 2019, in the longest Wimbledon singles final to date (4 hours, 57 minutes), 37-year-old Roger Federer was beaten in the fifth set by Novak Djokovic. Although he couldn’t come out on top in this particular final, the following comment on Roger Federer highlights the importance of tactical creativity in tennis: “He is an artist who is impressively creative and he transfers his strong emotionality into the game”. However, I would argue that this should be the case not only for tennis but also for soccer, team handball, basketball, field hockey, softball, volleyball, tennis, badminton, or squash. Tactical creativity is a key performance variable in sports (Memmert, 2015). During my presentation I will first define and discuss the relevance of tactical creativity in invasion sports and then analyze sport activities, coaching, and training environments that foster tactical creativity in youth and professional sports. Here, I will introduce the latest version of the tactical creativity approach (TCA, Memmert, 2018) for team and racket sports, which is based on extensive research and can be regarded as the basis for the development of tactical creativity. Currently, the TCA focuses on seven methodological principles that foster tactical creativity in team sports. All of these principles (1-dimension games, diversification, deliberate practice, deliberate play, deliberate coaching, deliberate memory, deliberate motivation) are discussed in more depth for teaching and coaching PE and club training. 

Daniel Memmert is a Professor and Executive Head of the Institute of Exercise Training and Computer Science in Sport, German Sport University Cologne, Cologne, Germany, with a visiting assistant professorship 2014 at the University of Vienna (Austria). He studied physical education for high school teaching (PE, math, sport, and ethic) and has trainer licences in soccer, tennis, snowboard, and skiing. Memmert received his PhD (basic cognition in team sports) and habilitation (creativity in team sports) in sport science from the Elite University of Heidelberg. In 2010 he was awarded 3rd place with Germany's most renowned German Olympic Sports Confederation (DOSB) Science Award. His research is focused on human movement science (cognition and motor activity), sport psychology (attention and motivation), computer science in sports (pattern identification and simulation), talent, children and elite research (Trainings-/PE-Curricula) and research methods. 

He has 20 years of teaching and coaching experience, has an H-index of 41 (i10-Index 109), and has authored or co-authored more than 200 peer-reviewed publications, 20 books and 30 book chapters, and he is an ad-hoc reviewer for several international psychology and sport psychology journals. In addition, he gave more than 100 invited talks, 90 scientific talks on conferences, and more than 100 teaching courses for PE teachers and trainers. He collaborates with researchers from the US, Canada, Brazil, and Spain. He transfers his expertise to business companies, the German Football National Team (DFB), and professional soccer clubs (e.g. Red Bull Salzburg, Red Bull Leipzig, TSG 1899 Hoffenheim, Philadelphia Union) and organized the first international master in “Performance Analysis/Game analysis”.


Professor Stephen Harvey 

Maximizing student motivation with hybrid models

Stephen Harvey is Professor of Recreation and Sports Pedagogy at Ohio University, USA.  He completed his PhD at Oregon State University (2003-2006). In 2016, Dr. Harvey was honoured as a Research Fellow by the Society of Health and Physical Educators (SHAPE) America due to his extensive contributions to research in both physical education and sports coaching. His main research interest surrounds game-based approaches to teaching and coaching. However, his work in coaching has additionally been focused on the systematic observation of coaching behavior, and how coaching behavior is tied to coaching biographies. Dr. Harvey has maintained an interest in educational technology and co-developed an app (Axis Coaching) that a trained observer can use to investigate and record coaches' behavior. Finally, Dr. Harvey's interest in educational technology has led to him researching with and about teachers and coaches social media use. 

Dr. Harvey is a former junior international field hockey coach and currently works with organizations such as USA field hockey and the United States Olympic Committee in a coach development and education role. Recently Dr. Harvey has successfully completed international coach educator/developer qualification and was previously a coach educator with England Hockey, the National Governing Body of Field Hockey in England. Dr. Harvey is also an experienced, licensed soccer and badminton coach and has coached both these sports at the collegiate level in England. In addition, he is also a licensed physical education teacher in England.


Professor Jean Côté

An Evidence-Based Intervention to Help Leaders Adopt Inclusive and Positive Interpersonal Behaviours When Teaching Games for Understanding.

There is growing recognition that effective coaching is not only about developing better athletes, but better people. To achieve this important goal, education programs are needed to help adults foster high-quality interpersonal relationships when interacting with students and athletes. Developed by a team of researchers across Canada and the United States, the Transformational Coaching workshop is an innovative, evidence-informed workshop which is ideally suited for games-based practitioners.  The workshop is designed to enhance leadership skills, and ultimately improve the quality of relationships between young athletes and their leaders. By becoming more effective leaders, coaches and game-based practitioners can positively contribute to their athletes’ performance, long-term participation, and personal development. This presentation will revolve around three main sections that summarize some recent research around Transformational Leadership behaviours in sport coaches.  The first section will focus on reviewing and examining the concept of coaching effectiveness and to present fundamental principles of Transformational Coaching.  The second section will focus on the components of a newly designed Transformational Leadership-based training intervention designed to enhance coaches’ interpersonal behaviors and how these elements align with games-based approaches such as Games Sense and Teaching Games for Understanding (TGfU).  Finally, the third section will be centred around increasing participants’ understanding of the principles of transformational coaching and the implementation of transformational coaching behaviors in sport.   

Dr. Jean Côté is professor the School of Kinesiology and Health Studies at Queen’s University in Kingston (Canada) where he served as the Director of the School from 2006-2019.  His research interests are in the areas of children in sport, coaching, positive youth development, and sport expertise. Dr. Côté is on, or has been on, the editorial boards of the Journal of Applied Sport PsychologyThe Sport PsychologistRevue International des Sciences du Sport et de l’Education PhysiqueInternational Review of Sport and Exercise PsychologyInternational Sport Coaching Journal, and Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy.  He was a co-editor of the International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology between 2008-2011.  In 2009, Dr. Côté was the recipient of the 4th EW Barker Professorship from the Physical Education and Sport Science department at the National Institute of Education in Singapore.  He received the Queen’s University Award for Excellence in Graduate Supervision for 2013.  

Dr. Côté is regularly invited to present his work to both sport governing organizations and academic conferences throughout the world.  He has delivered 60 keynote addresses at major national and international conferences.  Since 1999, he has received, as a Principal Investigator, six consecutive grants from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) to fund his research work.  His most recent grant involves the use of observation techniques to examine the influence of different types of coach-athlete relationships and the development of a Transformational Coaching workshop that focuses on positive youth development. 

Dr. Côté has also assisted different international organizations as a research advisor or through the completion of position papers such as the International Olympic Committee, National Federation of State High School Associations, American Orthopedic Society for Sports Medicine, Sport Coach UK, National Basketball Association, UNESCO, International Council of Coaching Excellence, the English Premier League, UK Sport, Fédération de Golf Française, and Irish Sport Council.    

Further Keynote speakers will be announced in due course 

Extended Seminars


Will Roberts

Boing Kids: Creating fun games that promote physical literacy

During this interactive session, we will provide children’s teachers and coaches with a selection of evidence-based games to improve physical literacy in children. Alongside its involvement in schools, the Boing Kids research project in partnership with Sport England, aims to target inactivity in children through a play-based approach to PE and physical activity. We will showcase a selection of replicable, evidence-based games intended to improve physical literacy and encourage children to enjoy getting active and discuss how and why we designed using a games approach to learning. 

Will Roberts is a Senior Lecturer in Sport and Exercise Science, University of Gloucestershire, UK.  Will has worked in higher education for the last 15 years and held teaching positions for over a decade in elite sport environments, establishing his work as a multi-disciplinarian in sports coaching research.  Will developed the undergraduate and postgraduate research programmes in coaching at Oxford Brookes University, where he holds a post as visiting researcher in the Centre for Movement, Occupational and Rehabilitation Sciences (MOReS).



Dr Andy Cale

With: Professor Stephen Harvey and Dr Don Vinson

The Integration of games-based approaches in National Governing Bodies of Sport in the UK and USA 

Dr Andy Cale is one of the UK’s most experienced coach educators and published Advances in Coach Education and Development (Allison, Abraham, & Cale, 2016), which discusses the latest developments in the field from the particular perspective of the Football Association. The challenges and debates within the text extend both nationally and internationally.  Andy has worked in football and education for well over 25 years and brings a unique combination that blends high-level practical experience as a Coach (UEFA Pro Licence holder) and coach educator with a strong academic foundation.  Andy has enjoyed a career with many different organisations, including; Sheffield United as a Sports Psychologist, The Football Association as Head of Player Development and Research and The New Saints (TNS) as a Manager in the Champions League.  Andy is currently leading a bespoke project for the League Managers’ Association upskilling their mentors currently supporting club managers within the professional game.



Stuart Armstrong

Playing in the Vortex of Variability’ – an affordance led approach to coaching

In this session Stuart Armstrong will share the evolution of his coaching approach which has a foundation in TGfU and games-based approaches and has now evolved through the influence of ecological dynamics and non-linear pedagogy.  The session provides a theoretical underpinning as well as an explanation of the approach followed by a practical experience applied through the sport of cricket. 

Stuart is the head of coaching for Sport England and producer of the Talent Equation Podcast. He is a Sports Science Graduate from University of Wales who has worked in sports development, talent and performance sport for the over 20 years. In 2000, Stuart designed and launched a ground-breaking golf programme aimed at children aged 5 to 11 called Tri-Golf which has gone on to become a globally recognised development product. It has provided golf experiences to over 2,000,000 children across 22 countries. 

Stuart has held positions in performance and talent development at England Golf, UK Coaching and the Rugby Football Union. All of these roles have focussed on creating optimal development environments for young people to thrive and reach their potential. Stuart is currently the Head of Coaching and Professional Workforce at Sport England. He has been responsible for writing and publishing two national strategy documents, ‘Coaching in an Active Nation: The Coaching Plan for England’ and ‘Working in an Active Nation: The Professional Workforce Strategy for England’. 

Stuart is a highly regarded public speaker having delivered keynote presentations across the globe for a range of organisations both in and out of sport. He is also an expert facilitator who leads workshops for organisations striving to support people to be the best they can be. Stuart also owns the website www.thetalentequation.co.uk and is host of the 5 star rated podcast ‘The Talent Equation’ which is dedicated to providing advice, guidance and support to people at the cutting edge of coaching and performance development. 

Stuart has coaching qualifications in Hockey, Cricket, Rugby and Golf.  He has coached internationally at national league level and has held roles as a National Age Group Talent Development Coach at England Hockey, working with some of the top U16 and U18 players in the country. Alongside all this, Stuart volunteers at his local clubs and faces his biggest coaching challenge with 50 U10 hockey players in the winter and 40 U11 cricketers during the summer.  



Dr David Gutierrez 

TGfU video tutorials

In this session, the videos submitted to the TGfU video library project will be presented. Attendees will be invited to view the videos, which will also be available through the conference app, and will subsequently be able to offer questions to the authors. Attendees will also be encouraged to evaluate the tutorials based on their educational and dissemination potential, as well as their fidelity to the fundamentals of the TGfU approach. 

David Gutierrez is Professor of Physical Education Teacher Education in the Faculty of Education at Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha. He obtained his BS in physical education from INEF de Madrid (1997), and his PhD in sport Sciences from Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha (2008). David has co-authored several books on sport pedagogy and has numerous refereed journal publications. His current research focusses on training and professional development of physical-education teachers and model-based physical education, especially in Game Based Approaches and Sport Education Models. David has been a member of the AIESEP since 2006, and of the TGfU Special Interest Group since 2012. He is currently chair of the international board of this organization, whose mission is to promote and support Game Based Approaches to teaching and coaching.


Scientific Committee

Thank you to all those who have contributed with proposals, ideas and efforts, and in particular the Scientific Committee who are made up of the following members:

Dr Don Vinson (Chair)
Professor Derek Peters
Dr Heidi Bohler
Dr Adrian Turner
Dr Rhys Pritchard
Polly Lasota
Dr David Gutiérrez
Dr Jesse Rhoades
Dr Steve Mitchell
Kelly Ann Mallard
Michelle Morgan

Find Us

The University has three main sites: St John's Campus, City Campus and Severn Campus as well as the nearby Lakeside Campus.  The St John’s and City Campus are a pleasant 20-minute walk from each other, with the Severn Campus conveniently situated between the two.

St John's Campus is the main conference venue.  The address and postcode are: 
University of Worcester, St John's Campus, Henwick Grove, St John's, Worcester, WR2 6AJ 

For travel details to St Johns Campus please see our St John's Campus page which includes directions and useful maps

Car Parking

To park on any of our University of Worcester campuses you will either require a parking permit or a pay & display ticket.  Please refer to the car parking webpage for more information about parking charges and maps of car park locations. 

If you are a Blue Badge holder and require accessibility information for our parking, see the AccessAble car park guide.


 Teaching Games for Understanding 

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