Women in Sport and Physical Activity Journal

Women in Sport and Physical Activity Journal (WSPAJ) is a peer-reviewed scholarly journal devoted to advancing the understanding of women in sport and physical activity. WSPAJ is the official journal of the Program for the Advancement of Girls and Women in Sport and Physical Activity, housed in the Center for Women's Health and Wellness at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (learn more here). This established journal publishes articles related to women’s sport and physical activity across the full range of disciplinary perspectives. WSPAJ aims to facilitate opportunities for girls and women to enjoy and benefit from sports and other physical activities.

WSPAJ presents a body of knowledge readily and conveniently. Original research using varied methodologies as well as theoretical papers, reviews, practical articles, and commentaries will be considered for publication. In addition, WSPAJ provides a forum for sharing information and encourages scholars to address issues pertinent to the concerns of women in the sport and physical activity community. The journal also strives toward an international voice, identifying common concerns of women in all countries and working to better communicate among the multicultural women of the world.

WSPAJ is available in a digital format, providing online subscribers with the same authoritative content of the print edition but with additional advantages, including the ability to search entire issues in seconds and access to all back issues. The content of the online version of WSPAJ is available weeks before the print version arrives by mail, and subscribers can receive the table of contents of each issue by e-mail when a new issue has been published. The online format also allows the submission and use of digital media to better communicate ideas and information.


Women in Sport and Physical Activity Journal, a peer-reviewed journal, provides a forum for scholarship advancing our understanding of women in sport and physical activity. Published biannually, the journal consists of original research using varied methodologies as well as theoretical papers, reviews, practical articles, and commentaries related to women’s sport and physical activity.


Lori A. Gano-Overway
James Madison University, USA

Associate Editor

Jennifer Waldron
University of Northern Iowa, USA

Managing Editor

Donna Duffy
University of North Carolina at Greensboro, USA

Editorial Board

Victoria Bacon, Bridgewater State University, USA

Glenna Bower, University of Southern Indiana, USA

Laura Burton, University of Connecticut, USA

Theodore Butryn, San Jose State University, USA

DeAnne Davis Brooks, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, USA

Guylaine Demers, Laval University, Canada

Leslee Fisher, University of Tennessee-Knoxville, USA

Jacky Forsyth, Staffordshire University, UK

Diane L. Gill, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, USA

Christy Greenleaf, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, USA

Katherine M. Jamieson, California State University, Sacramento, USA 

Bobbi Knapp, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, USA

Nicole LaVoi, University of Minnesota, USA

Melissa A. Mache, California State University, Chico, USA

Leilani Madrigal, California State University, Long Beach, USA

Jennifer McGarry, University of Connecticut, USA

Eva Monsma, University of South Carolina, USA

Barbara Osborne, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA

Justine Reel, University of North Carolina at Wilmington, USA

Erin J. Reifsteck, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, USA

Jaime Schultz, Pennsylvania State University, USA

Ellen Staurowsky, Ithaca College, USA

Pamela D. Swan, Arizona State University, USA

Theresa Walton, Kent State University, USA

Laurie Wideman, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, USA

Lavon Williams, Guilford College, USA

Jenny Withycombe, University of Colorado, USA

E. Missy Wright, California State University East Bay, USA

Tao Zhang, University of North Texas, USA

Social Media Manager

Emorie Worthington, University of North Carolina at Wilmington, USA

Human Kinetics Staff
Doug Hoepker, 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:

Submit a Manuscript

Authorship Guidelines

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. Conception and design, or analysis and interpretation of data; and
b. Drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content; and
c. Final approval of the version to be published.

Conditions a, b, and c must all be met. Individuals who do not meet the above criteria may be listed in the acknowledgments section of the manuscript. *Uniform requirements for manuscripts submitted to biomedical journals. (1991). New England Journal of Medicine, 324, 424–428.

Open Access

Human Kinetics is pleased to allow our authors the option of having their articles published Open Access. In order for an article to be published Open Access, authors must complete and return the Request for Open Access form and provide payment for this option. To learn more and request Open Access, click here.

Manuscript Guidelines

Women in Sport and Physical Activity Journal (WSPAJ) is a peer-reviewed, scholarly journal devoted to advancing our understanding of women in sport and physical activity. WSPAJ publishes scholarly articles related to women’s sport and physical activity across the full range of disciplinary perspectives. Original research using varied methodologies as well as theoretical papers, reviews, practical articles, and commentaries will be considered for publication. These manuscript types are described below.

Manuscript Types

Original Research

Research manuscripts will report studies explaining the purpose, methodology, sample, results, and implications. A variety of research designs are welcomed and interdisciplinary work is encouraged.

Theoretical Papers and Reviews

Manuscripts will report a theoretical or conceptual framework or conduct a systematic review of research in a particular area of expertise.

Practical Articles

Manuscripts will report on an evidence-based practice applied in a sport or physical activity setting with women or girls.  The manuscripts will discuss the theoretical or conceptual basis for their applied work along with research supporting evidence-based practice followed by a description of the applied work and lessons learned through implementation.


Typically, manuscripts will report commentary or a response to an article recently published within WSPAJ, within the last year.  The blinded manuscript will not only be reviewed like typical manuscripts but also shared with the article authors.  If accepted, article authors will have the right to provide a counter response to the commentary.  However, a commentary can also include manuscripts that comment on the state of women in sport or physical activity.  Both types of commentary manuscripts are limited to 10 pages (all inclusive).

Book Reviews

Manuscripts will report a review of a recently published book, within the last year.  These manuscripts are limited to 10 pages (all inclusive).  Further details regarding submission guidelines for book reviews is provided below.

Style and Format

In preparing manuscripts for publication in WSPAJ, authors should carefully adhere to the guidelines in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (7th ed., 2020). All articles must be preceded by an abstract of no more than 250 words. Special attention should be given to the preparation and accuracy of references, and to the absence of sexist and biased language. The manuscript should be double-spaced, including the abstract, references, and any block quotations. Normally, papers should not exceed a total of 25 pages, including references, tables, and figures.

Manuscripts must not have been published elsewhere or be simultaneously submitted to another journal. The manuscript order should be as follows: (1) blind title page, (2) abstract, (3) manuscript text, (4) references, and (5) tables and figures. For studies involving human participants, the author(s) must include a statement that the research was approved by the appropriate institutional review board and informed consent was obtained.

Artwork and Tables

All artwork must be professionally prepared, with clean, crisp lines. Graphics created on standard computer programs (and submitted in .tif or .jpg formats) will be accepted; freehand or typewritten lettering will not be accepted. If photos are used, they should be clear and show good contrast. Each figure and photo must be properly identified. In graphs, use black and white or gray shading only, no color. Keep labels proportionate with the size of the figures on the journal page. Digital images should be 300 dpi at full size for photos and 600 dpi for line art. Format tables in the table function of your word-processing program rather than aligning columns in text with tabs and spaces or using text boxes. Any figures or photos from a source not original to the author must be accompanied by a statement from the copyright holder(s) giving the author permission to publish it; the source and copyright holder must be credited in the manuscript.


Video clips may be submitted to illustrate your manuscript. Upon submission, each digital video file should be designated and uploaded as a “supplementary file.” You also should indicate in the cover letter accompanying your submission that you have submitted a video file. Digital material from a source not original to you as the author must be accompanied by a statement from the copyright holder giving the author permission to publish it; the source and copyright holder must be credited in the manuscript.

Video should be submitted in MPEG-4 (.mp4), Quicktime (.m4v, .mov), or Windows Media (.wmv) format with standard frame sizes of 1920 x 1080 pixels (for high definition) or 720 x 480 pixels (for standard definition) and a frame rate of 30 frames per second. Human Kinetics will inspect all video submissions for quality and technical specifications, and we reserve the right to reject any video submission that does not meet quality standards and specifications.

Cover Letters

Authors must submit a separate cover letter that lists: (1) the title of the manuscript, (2) the date of submission, and (3) the full names of all the authors and their institutional or corporate affiliations. 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.

Specific Guidelines for Book Reviews

WSPAJ also publishes reviews of recent books related to women in sport and physical activity settings. Scholars who are interested in reviewing a book should contact the Editor.

Book Review Format

Book review authors should follow the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (7th edition, 2020) guidelines for journal article style. Keep references to a minimum. Check for the correct spelling of proper names. Check quotations for accuracy and make sure to provide page numbers for quotes. Reviews should be no more than 10 pages (including blinded title page, manuscript text, references). The text, including quotes and bibliographic information, should be double-spaced.

Bibliographic information for the book should be placed at the top of the review in the following format:

Title by Author(s). Publisher, year of publication, location of publisher.
Reviewed by: Reviewer, institutional affiliation, location.

The content of a good review provides description and analysis and attempts to situate a book in a larger context. You should describe the author’s central argument, intent, or goal and the author’s approach to the subject. Please avoid a chapter-by-chapter listing of themes. You might want to contextualize the text by situating it in relationship to the author’s previous works, to debates in the broader culture, or to relevant literature. Your analysis of the book could include a discussion of what makes it unique, its strengths and weaknesses, the implications of its arguments, and/or its relationship to other texts. You could also comment on the book’s potential impact on the field or on a specific area of study, theoretical approach, or methodology. Illustrate your points with examples from the text.

A 100-word biographical sketch of the reviewer is provided at the end of the review which documents their expertise for completing the review.

Review for Book Review

The submission of a review confirms that the review has not and will not appear elsewhere in published form. Book reviews will be received and reviewed by a member of the Editorial Board. Reviewers should note that submission of an unsolicited review does not guarantee publication in the journal. Reviewers may be asked to revise their reviews. The assigned Editorial Board member makes recommendations for acceptance of reviews to the Editor of the journal. The Editor makes all final decisions about what will appear in the journal.

Specific Guidelines for Special Issues

The following guidelines are intended to help scholars prepare a special issue proposal. In no more than four pages author(s) should address the following questions using the headings provided.

1. Synopsis

  • In 150 words or less, what is your special issue about? Important: Be sure to include its main themes and objectives.

2. Rationale

  • What are you proposing to do differently/more innovatively/better than has already been done on the topic (in WSPAJ specifically, as well as in the field more generally)?
  • Why is now the time for a special issue on this topic?
  • Why is WSPAJ the most appropriate venue for this topic?
  • What are the main competing works on the topic (e.g., edited books, other special issues)?

3. Qualifications

  • Why are you the right person(s) to edit a special issue on this topic? Why are you an expert in this area? What have you previously written on the topic?
  • Have you edited/co-edited a special issue before? If yes, please give the citation(s).
  • Have you edited/co-edited a book before? If yes, please give the citation(s).
  • Do you currently serve on any journal editorial boards? If yes, please list.
  • Please provide your vitae.

4. Timeline

  • Given that it takes approximately 12 months to complete a special issue, please provide a detailed timeline including estimated dates or time frames for the following steps: (a) Call for papers, (b) Submission deadline, (c) Review process, (d) Revision process, (e) Copyediting, (f) Final editing and approval from WSPAJ editor, (g) Completion and submission to Human Kinetics.

Manuscript Review

Please note that a blind review process is used to evaluate manuscripts. As such, any clues to the author’s identity should be eliminated from the manuscript. The first page of the manuscript must not include author names or affiliations, but it should include the title of the paper and the date of submission. Submissions that do not adhere to these guidelines may be returned to authors.

Manuscripts are read by two reviewers, with the review process taking 8–12 weeks. There are no page charges to contributors.

Please direct all correspondence concerning the journal and manuscript submissions to the WSPAJ editorial office: christinaj@hkusa.com.

Desk Rejection Policy

Before full review, submissions are examined at the editorial level. If the Editor and an Editorial Board Member believe the submission has extensive flaws or is inconsistent with the mission and focus of the journal, the manuscript may receive a desk reject decision.

Submitting a Manuscript

Manuscripts should be submitted electronically via ScholarOne (see submission button at the top of this page). ScholarOne manages the electronic transfer of manuscripts throughout the article review process while providing step-by-step instructions and a user-friendly design. Please access the site and follow the directions for authors submitting manuscripts.

Authors of manuscripts accepted for publication must transfer copyright to Human Kinetics, Inc. Please visit ScholarOne to view the copyright form located under the "Instructions & Forms" link in the upper-right corner. You do not need an account to access this information. Any problems that may be encountered can be resolved easily by selecting "Help" in the upper-right corner of any ScholarOne screen.



Online Subscriptions

Individuals may purchase online-only subscriptions directly from this website. To order, click on an article and select the subscription option you desire for the journal of interest (individual or student, 1-year or 2-year), and then click Buy. Those purchasing student subscriptions must be prepared to provide proof of student status as a degree-seeking candidate at an accredited institution. Online-only subscriptions purchased via this website provide immediate access to all the journal's content, including all archives and Ahead of Print. Note that a subscription does not allow access to all the articles on this website, but only to those articles published in the journal you subscribe to. For step-by-step instructions to purchase online, click here.

Print + Online Subscriptions

Individuals wishing to purchase a subscription with a print component (print + online) must contact our customer service team directly to place the order. Click here to contact us!


Institution subscriptions must be placed directly with our customer service team. To review format options and pricing, visit our Librarian Resource Center. To place your order, contact us

Follow @WSPAJ  

Special Series Call for Abstracts. Engaging Conversation in Women's Sport and Physical Activity: Traversing Generations. Click for Details

Most Popular