Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly (APAQ) is the major journal of peer-reviewed research in adapted physical activity. APAQ provides the latest scholarly inquiry related to physical activity for individuals with disabilities. It is also viewed as one of the major journals in the rehabilitation area. The journal is multidisciplinary and not confined to the use of particular methodologies. In fact, it encourages diversity of topics and approaches. APAQ is the journal of the International Federation of Adapted Physical Activity. The journal encourages the submission of manuscripts addressing salient issues in adapted physical activity.
APAQ is published quarterly, in January, April, July, and October.
APAQ is an international, peer-reviewed, multidisciplinary journal designed to stimulate and communicate scholarly inquiry relating to physical activity that is adapted in order to enable and enhance performance and participation in people with disability. Physical activity implies fine, gross, functional, and interpretive movement including physical education, recreation, exercise, sport, and dance. The focus of adaptation may be the activity or task that is to be performed, environment and facilities, equipment, instructional methodology, and/or rules governing the performance setting. Among the populations considered are persons with motor, intellectual, sensory, and mental or other disabilities across the life span. Disciplines from which scholarship to this aim may originate include, but are not limited to, physical education, teacher preparation, human development, motor behavior and learning, biomechanics, exercise and sport physiology, and exercise and sport psychology. Scientific inquiry may originate from quantitative or qualitative inquiry, as well as from multimethod designs.
APAQ is divided into seven sections, the first five of which include submitted papers. Viewpoint is an editorial section that contains commentary on current opinions, legislative and regulatory concerns, and trends in the discipline and profession. The Research section reports original and replicated research using appropriate scientific methodology. The Application section contains applied investigations in settings often requiring unique methodologies, reports of case studies, programmatic developments involving strategies and techniques, and the design of equipment and facilities. The Brief Research Note section presents shorter articles reporting original ideas, information, or insights, including technical or methodological research, case studies, novel techniques, and replication or validation studies. In contrast to all other sections, the length limit for brief research notes is 15 pages. The Review section contains papers that systematically and critically examine previously published literature. APAQ also contains a Digest of abstracts of recently published work from around the world, as well as a Books & Media review section. Not all sections necessarily appear in each issue.
Please visit the Ethics Policy page for information about the policies followed by APAQ.
Justin A. Haegele Old Dominion University, USA
Kelly Arbour-Nicitopoulos University of Toronto, Canada
Janine Coates Loughborough University, UK
Phil Esposito Texas Christian University, USA
Seán Healy University of Limerick, Ireland
E. Andrew Pitchford Oregon State University, USA
Cindy Sit Chinese University of Hong Kong, China
Books & Media Reviews Editor
Scott McNamara University of New Hampshire, USA
Geoffrey D. Broadhead (Founding Editor: 1983–1991) Kent State University, USA
Greg Reid (1992–1996) McGill University, Canada
Claudine Sherrill (1997–2001) Texas Woman’s University, USA
David L. Porretta (2002–2006) The Ohio State University, USA
Terry L. Rizzo (2007–2010) California State University, San Bernardino, USA
Marcel Bouffard (2010–2013) University of Alberta, Canada
Yeshayahu Hutzler (2014–2016) Zinman College for Physical Education & Sport Sciences, The Wingate Institute, Israel
Jeffrey J. Martin (2017–2022) Wayne State University, USA
Maria Luiza Tanure Alves, University of Campinas, Brazil
Tânia Bastos, University of Porto, Portugal
Vista L. Beasley, University of New York–Brockport, USA
Robert C. Eklund, Florida State University, USA
M. Blair Evans, Western University, Canada
Samuel R. Hodge, The Ohio State University, USA
Jooyeon Jin, University of Seoul, South Korea
Martin Kudlacek, Palacký University, Czech Republic
Chunxiao Li, South China Normal University, China
Lauren J. Lieberman, The College at Brockport, USA
Meghann Lloyd, University of Ontario Institute of Technology, Canada
Megan MacDonald, Oregon State University, USA
Anthony Maher, Leeds Beckett University, UK
Iva Obrusnikova, University of Delaware, USA
Eryk Przysucha, Lakehead University, Canada
Raul Reina, Miguel Hernandez University, Spain
Emma Richardson, University of Worcester, UK
Samantha Ross, West Virginia University, USA
Deborah Shapiro, Georgia State University, USA
Celina H. Shirazipour, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, USA
Brett Smith, Durham University, UK
Nancy L.I. Spencer, University of Alberta, Canada
Heidi Stanish, University of Massachusetts Boston, USA
Andrea R. Taliaferro, West Virginia University, USA
Viviene Anne Temple, University of Victoria, Canada
Andrea Utley, University of Leeds, UK
Joonkoo Yun, East Carolina University, USA
Social Media Editor
Lindsey Nowland, Old Dominion University, USA
Human Kinetics Staff
Julia Glahn, Senior Journals Managing Editor
Christina Johnson, Editorial Assistant
Prior to submission, please carefully read and follow the submission guidelines detailed below. Authors must submit their manuscripts through the journal’s ScholarOne online submission system. To submit, click the button below:
The Journals Division at Human Kinetics adheres to the criteria for authorship as outlined by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors*:
Each author should have participated sufficiently in the work to take public responsibility for the content. Authorship credit should be based only on substantial contributions to:
a. Substantial contributions to the conception or design of the work; or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work; AND
b. Drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content; AND
c. Final approval of the version to be published; AND
d. Agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.
Authors who use artificial intelligence (AI)-assisted technologies (such as Large Language Models [LLMs], chatbots, or image creators) in their work must indicate how they were used in the cover letter and the work itself. These technologies cannot be listed as authors as they are unable to meet all the conditions above, particularly agreeing to be accountable for all aspects of the work.
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As outlined in the Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly (APAQ) Mission, the journal accepts five major types of papers: Viewpoint, Review, Original Research, Brief Research Note, and Application. Occasionally, APAQ may present papers related to a specific theme; to read more about special issues, download the guidelines here.
Cover Letters. Authors must submit a separate cover letter that lists (a) the title of the manuscript, (b) the date of submission, and (c) the full names of all the authors and their institutional or corporate affiliations, as well as (d) the corresponding author's e-mail address. In addition to this essential information, a cover letter should be composed as described on pp. 382–383 of the Publication Manual of the APA (7th ed., 2020) and should include clear statements pertaining to potential fragmented publication, authorship, and other ethical considerations.
More specifically, the cover letter should include the following statements:
"This manuscript represents results of original work that have not been published elsewhere (except as an abstract in conference proceedings). This manuscript has not and will not be submitted for publication elsewhere until a decision is made regarding its acceptability for publication in APAQ. If accepted for publication, it will not be published elsewhere."
"Furthermore, if there are any perceived financial conflicts of interest related to the research reported in the manuscript, I/we (the author/s) have disclosed it in the Author's Notes."
"All authors acknowledge ethical responsibility for the content of the manuscript and will accept the consequences of any ethical violation."
"This research is not part of a larger study."
If the study is part of a larger study, authors must follow the guidelines specified in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (pp. 17–20 of 7th ed.).
Editorial Decisions. Submissions that are rejected (i.e., that do not receive a minor- or major-revision decision and invitation to resubmit) should not be resubmitted to APAQ per the Publication Manual of the APA (7th ed., 2020, p. 381), which reads that any manuscript "that has been rejected by a journal may not be revised and resubmitted to that same journal.”
Preparing and Reporting Guidelines
APAQ will publish well-informed viewpoints relevant to adapted physical activity (APA) integrating the body of knowledge in a relevant area. Exchanging and debating ideas is central to the future of APA. APAQ welcomes the exchange and debate of ideas related to key issues in our field.
Different types of papers might qualify as Viewpoint. In general, Viewpoints are a subset of articles that reflect a particular position adopted by a person or a group. A Viewpoint is an articulated organized perspective about a particular topic or issue associated with APA. It is a scholarly view on a topic of importance in APA. A Viewpoint must be clearly expressed and demonstrate a thorough and broad understanding of the literature and practices in the field. The opinion expressed must be cogently presented and lead to insights and possibly new and interesting perspectives. APAQ will expect a Viewpoint paper to stimulate discussion among the APA community that will result in advancing our knowledge and understanding of contemporary issues, as well as practice, in APA.
While the subjective nature of Viewpoint manuscripts should be taken into account, high scholarly standards for relevance, documentation, organization, and content pertain. The author must establish a context for why the manuscript is justified and must point toward the implications or consequences that might follow from the opinions expressed in the article.
The article addresses a serious challenge facing the APA community.
The article significantly adds to or enhances our understanding of challenges and/or issues on the subject in question.
A good case for the Viewpoint is made.
The context for the article is made in the introduction and a logical case is made for the expression of the Viewpoint.
The purpose of the Viewpoint is clear and well articulated. The Viewpoint is cogently argued.
The Viewpoint is based on a thorough understanding of the present body of knowledge and/or practices.
As needed, the literature is thoroughly reviewed, appraised, and well-integrated.
Historical background is thoroughly reviewed, where appropriate.
Key concepts and terms are well explained.
The manuscript is logically organized, well written, and easy to follow.
The parts of the manuscript are well integrated and coherent and the conclusions follow.
Contrasting viewpoints or counter-arguments are considered.
The perceived benefits and limitations of the position advocated are clearly stated.
The number of references is appropriate and their selection is judicious.
Articles reviewing and synthesizing the research literature available on a specific topic within the field of APA are welcome. Please refer to specific guidelines for preparing and reporting a Review article below and/or the widely accepted CONSORT guidelines.
1. If you offer a narrative discussion of the literature and do not include a statistical analysis from the collection of studies for the purpose of integrating the findings, then tell APAQ reviewers the reasoning for doing so.
2. It is essential to include detail about the methods employed. Suggestions to consider:
Inclusion criteria: Prepare this as a separate section. Please address the issue of the "population" of papers including unpublished papers from proceedings, difficult-to-locate papers, dissertations, etc. You should justify/explain why you focused on studies in peer-reviewed literature. This is a usual expectation. One could easily miss a paper presented at a conference that might have good methods, etc., and the investigator may never submit it for peer review.
Exclusion criteria: Similarly, in a separate section, describe the types of studies you excluded (i.e., pilot studies, abstracts, technical reports, dissertations, etc.) and provide a rationale.
Searching: Include a section describing the systematic search following the criteria you set with the methodological filter. List the keywords in this section and make a statement about reference tracking on all included studies. It is helpful to include a flow chart demonstrating the search, inclusion, and exclusion path with the numbers of citations entering each stage.
Blind selection: When the paper is not single-authored, present information that indicates the extent to which co-author decisions were made. APAQ will assume that the authors of the manuscript were blind to the authors and publication years of the papers under review and independently applied the inclusion criteria. Detail how disagreements were handled. If more than one person made the decision regarding the inclusion criteria, what was the degree of interrater agreement across inclusion criteria? If two people disagreed, was a third person used for consensus? Was the Results section removed prior to examination so that you could reach a decision based on design and methods?
Methodological quality assessment: How did you assess methodological quality? Did you use guidelines or a rubric for systemic review? Did you have quality summary scores to distinguish between high- and low-quality studies? Did you exclude studies of low methodological quality? Please share the details with APAQ.
Data evaluation: How did you evaluate the data from primary studies that are relevant to the research question(s) and establish criteria for judging the adequacy of the procedures used to gather and code the data?
Data analysis and interpretation: Include a discussion of how, during the presentation analysis and interpretation stage, the separate data points were synthesized into a unified statement about the research questions. We recommend that you support narrative descriptions with tables summarizing the information with headings such as Participants, Methods, Interventions, Results, and Conclusions. Did you convert results into a common metric or other measure
3. Please consider framing the Results section with headers such as Study Selection, Study Description, Quality Assessment, Qualitative Analysis, and, if any, Quantitative Analysis.
4. The Discussion section should be followed by the limitations of the review, implications for research, and implications for practice, followed by references and a table (both with the authors in alphabetical order).
Potential contributors of data-based manuscripts must carefully consider both the assumptions and the theoretical foundations of their work, as well as its methodology. Indicate relevance of your work by referring to theories, paradigms, or conceptual frameworks and by briefly reviewing the existing knowledge base. All empirical papers must be based on research methods and designs appropriate to the question(s) addressed, conforming to whatever standards of excellence are expected with the approach(es) adopted. Bearing in mind this condition, qualitative and quantitative methods are equally welcome. For quantitative research, please refer to the many resources available in the literature, as well as Viewpoint articles published in APAQ on the use of high-quality research and statistical methods (e.g., Sherrill & O’Connor, 1999; Sutlive & Ulrich, 1998). In particular, the reporting of effect sizes is critical. According to the 7th edition of the APA manual, “For readers to appreciate the magnitude or importance of a study’s findings, it is recommended to include some measure of effect size in the Results section" (p. 89). For qualitative research, please refer to well-established guidelines (e.g., Chapter 7 in Sparkes, A.C., & Smith, B. . Qualitative research methods in sport, exercise and health: From process to product. London: Routledge), as well as COREQ for individual qualitative research papers and ENTREQ for synthesizing qualitative work.
Brief Research Note
APAQ encourages shorter articles reporting new ideas, information, or insights. All potential manuscripts should present original data. Content could include technical or methodological research, case studies, novel techniques, and replication or validation studies. Length limit is 15 pages.
APAQ also welcomes knowledge-translation studies or the presentation of a new and promising intervention in its Application section. This section includes preexperimental designs such as single-subject designs and case study or case study series reports demonstrating well-planned and documented interventions with applicative purposes or utilization of new sport and/or measurement equipment, accompanied with a useful and illustrative set of descriptive data.
Writing the Manuscript
Using the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (PMAPA) as a guide, pay attention to all the facets related to manuscript preparation. Format papers with a 1-in. (2.50-cm) margin, 12-point font, and double spacing, including quotations. Quantitative empirical research, as well as Viewpoint and Application papers, should not exceed 30 pages including tables, figures, and references (double-spaced). Qualitative empirical research, reviews, and meta-analyses should not exceed 34 pages. Brief Research Notes should not exceed 15 pages.
Check formatting against a sample paper from the PMAPA. Note that Method is singular, and the heading Participants is preferred over Subjects. Use line numbers in the left margin of each page, beginning with the abstract page; this facilitates providing line-by-line feedback. All manuscripts must include an unstructured abstract of up to 150 words and three to five keywords chosen from terms not used in the title.
APAQ is a multidisciplinary and international journal that is accepting of a wide range of language around disability, provided that this language is both respectful and consistent with the theoretical, epistemological, and disciplinary perspective(s) of the manuscript. This includes identity-first language (e.g., disabled people), person-first language (e.g., person with a disability), and other variations of disability-related language that are respectful and consistent. In instances where authors are using disability-related language that is not commonly published in the journal, APAQ welcomes, and appreciates, the use of footnotes explaining language choice to help educate APAQ reviewers and readers. Respectful language, in the context of disability, entails acknowledging the humanity and diversity of those whom we write about: for example, not referring to a person as their diagnosis (e.g., “a CP,” or “an asthmatic”) and not using potentially derogatory or tragic language (e.g., “cripple,” “confined to a wheelchair,” or “suffering from paralysis”) unless there is a compelling and explicit rationale for doing so (e.g., quoting historical sources or quoting participants’ self-descriptions). APAQ expects authors to take the same care in reporting all information, extending beyond disability, including that related to gender, sex, age, race, sexual orientation, religion, country of origin, etc.
For more clarification see the following:
APAQ language policy based on Peers, Spencer-Cavaliere, & Eales (2014). Say what you mean: Rethinking disability language in Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly. Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly, 31, 265–282. https://doi.org/10.1123/apaq.2013-0091
American Psychological Association. (2020). Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (7th ed.). Washington, DC: Author.
Sherrill, C., & O’Connor, J. (1999). Guidelines for improving adapted physical activity research. Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly, 16, 1–8. https://doi.org/10.1123/apaq.16.1.1
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