This article is organized around the idea that a person can be a part of kinesiology without being in kinesiology. Trained as a sociologist and never having a faculty appointment outside of a sociology department, I am an outsider in kinesiology. However, my participation in kinesiology and relationships with scholars in kinesiology departments have fostered my professional growth and my appreciation of interdisciplinary approaches to studying sports, physical activities, and the moving human body. The knowledge produced by scholars in kinesiology subdisciplines has provided a framework for situating and assessing my research, teaching, and professional service as a sociologist. The latter half of this article focuses on changes in higher education and how they are likely to negatively impact the social sciences and humanities subdisciplines in kinesiology. The survival of these subdisciplines will depend, in part, on how leaders in the field respond to the question, Kinesiology for whom?
Learn how sport influenced Rainer Martens’s life and his epiphany to become a physical educator and coach, which led him to study sport psychology. The author briefly recounts his work in sport psychology and coaching education. Next, the author describes how he stumbled into publishing, founding Human Kinetics, and describes how this company helped define kinesiology and influence the broad field of physical activity. The author concludes by reporting on his continued involvement in sport and the development of two community centers that focus on sport and physical activity.
As the title of this article suggests, I describe in this essay how my career has been shaped by specific events, such as not knowing the rules of the game I loved and played extensively, and significant mentors, such as the venerable Dr. Earl Zeigler and Dr. Garth Paton. I also explain how I been involved in the birth and growth of the field of sport management. More importantly, I show how the field has shaped my career and has opened up opportunities for me to travel the world in propagating the field around the globe.
William J. Morgan
This essay addresses four main questions. The first is devoted to how I became interested in the philosophy of sport. The second question concerns how my academic career has evolved over time in line with various developments in the field that privileged certain lines of study over others and which largely marginalized philosophy in particular and the humanities in general. The third question centers on what I take to be my own main contributions to the philosophy of sport and what, if any, impact they may have had on the larger field of kinesiology. Finally, I offer my own brief prognosis of what I think the future has in store for the relationship between sport philosophy and kinesiology.
Hal A. Lawson
Twentieth-Century Physical Education gave rise to Kinesiology. Today’s Kinesiology structures and influences Physical Education. Boundary crossing and bridge building facilitate analysis of their relations and have import for investigations of career pathways and outcomes. Decisions regarding boundaries and bridges will impact the futures of Kinesiology, Physical Education, and their relations in diverse, turbulent higher education environments.
David I. Anderson
I am not sure by what fortunate circumstance I was invited to contribute to this special issue of Kinesiology Review. However, I am deeply honored to be part of an issue with such esteemed scholars and colleagues. Like many, my introduction to the field of kinesiology was through sports, but my inspiration to pursue kinesiology as a career was the result of an injury that ended my sporting ambitions. My career is characterized by little planning, large amounts of dumb luck, a willingness to explore some paths that are less well trodden, and deep and enduring friendships that have resulted from a spirit of teamwork and collaboration. The work has been hard, the hours have been long, but the payoff has been enormously gratifying. The overarching lesson from my career for emerging scholars is to have an adventurous spirit and seek out excellent mentors and collaborators.
An examination of the kinds of questions we ask ourselves provides a window through which to interpret our history and imagine our future. I suggest that there are three kinds of questions—large ones, small ones, and leaky ones. Those that are identified as large and small map onto the value structures we have created for ourselves in higher education. I call these structures caste systems in which some subdisciplines are valued over others, and theoreticians stand above both practitioners and skill teachers. Leaky questions are those that cross boundaries because they cannot be effectively answered by those residing in any one area or at any one level. I argue that leaky questions generate humility, mutual respect, and incentives for collaboration. I trace my own attempts to address all three kinds of questions as a sport philosopher and conclude that our brighter future in kinesiology, including our attempts to address the harms created by the caste system, requires us to see that most of the questions we find interesting are, in fact, leaky in nature.
Jane E. Clark
The past is prologue, writes Shakespeare in The Tempest. And there seems no better expression to capture the theme of my essay on searching the future of kinesiology in its recent past through my lens as a motor development scholar. Using the developmental metaphor of climbing a mountain amidst a range of mountains, the progressing stages of my development and that of kinesiology are recounted. Over the five-plus decades of my growth as an academic and that of kinesiology, I look for the antecedents and the constraints that shape our change and may shape the future of the field of motor development and kinesiology.
Barbara E. Ainsworth
This paper provides reflections on my academic career in kinesiology and public health from an autobiographical perspective. Themes include the importance of movement and physical activity in my development and career choices, a recognition of the importance of physical activity for health outcomes, experiences in studying physical activity in a public health framework, and observations on kinesiology in higher education. I also reflect on the importance of the physical education and physical activity environment that brought me a sense of belonging, enjoyment, and accomplishment that has lasted throughout my career. As in sports and professional activities, I have tried my best and never given up until I felt the task was done.
In this essay, I drew upon the perspectives of Walter Benjamin’s “angel of history” in reflecting upon the history of kinesiology and the influences that led to my own academic career in kinesiology. I have outlined how my disciplinary training as a physical educator and educational historian provided the resources to propel my continuing inquiry into the inter- and cross-disciplinary (and intrinsically entangled) nature of kinesiology. Gender, nationality, training, location, and timing all had their influences on my education and job opportunities and upon building toward a career in a research university where physical education and kinesiology, by design and accident, increasingly separated from one another. From the perspective of a sport historian, I suggest that the language and pursuit of balance might be applied productively to thinking about the future of kinesiology. Sport historians can help in this mission by training a critical lens upon the ongoing traffic between nature and culture and the deep sociocultural situatedness of the science and technology practices used in kinesiology teaching and research in the 21st century. In essence, they can illuminate the historical context of the tools that now frame kinesiology’s questions and the political context in which their answers emerge.