Family Participation in Challenger Baseball: Critical Theory Perspectives

in Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly
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  • 1 Arlington Public Schools
  • | 2 Texas Woman’s University
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The purpose was to analyze the social construction of Challenger baseball opportunities in a selected community. Participants were 10 boys and 6 girls with mental and/or physical disabilities (ages 7 to 16 years, M = 11.31), their families, and the head coach. Data were collected through interviews in the homes with all family members, participant observation at practices and games, and field notes. The research design was qualitative, and critical theory guided interpretation. Analytical induction revealed five outcomes that were particularly meaningful as families and coach socially constructed Challenger baseball: (a) fun and enjoyment, (b) positive affect related to equal opportunity and feelings of “normalcy,” (c) social networking/emotional support for families, (d) baseball knowledge and skills, and (e) social interactions with peers.

Lupe Castañeda is with Arlington Public Schools, Arlington, TX. Claudine Sherrill is with the. Kinesiology Department, P.O. Box 425647, Texas Woman’s University, Denton, TX 76204. Direct correspondence to Claudine Sherrill.

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