Using Masculine Capital to Understand the Role of a Sport Program in the Lives of Men From a Western Canadian Inner City

in Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology

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Nicholas L. HoltUniversity of Alberta

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Jay SchererUniversity of Alberta

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Jordan KochUniversity of Alberta

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The purpose of this study was to examine the role of a sport program in the lives of homeless men with severe mental illnesses and addictions. Interviews were conducted with eight men who attended a floor hockey program, and data examined using categorical-content narrative methodology. Five themes captured the role of the floor hockey program in the men’s lives: (a) relationships with program leader, (b) therapy, (c) community, (d) action, and (e) achievement. These themes were interpreted using theories of masculinity (Connell, 1995; Gough, 2014). Relationships with the program leader and other men, and ways in which they were allowed to play with physicality, provided opportunities to accumulate masculine capital (i.e., ways in which competence in traditionally masculine behaviors provides masculine credit). Practically, the findings suggest that sport program delivery for men such as those in this study can be enhanced by providing opportunities for accruing masculine capital.

Nicholas L. Holt, Jay Scherer, and Jordan Koch are with the Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.

Address author correspondence to Nicholas L. Holt at nick.holt@ualberta.ca.
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