There are many reasons why individuals are motivated to participate in sports. Less attention, however, is given for studying motivation and athlete development in adapted sport. The purpose of this study was to identify the motivations, facilitators, and barriers to sports participation of elite athletes with a physical disability. Participants (N = 23, 17 males, six females, mean age: 24.3 years) were recruited through online listservs, e-mails, and snowball sampling. A semistructured interview guide was employed. Analysis was conducted and grounded in self-determination theory and literature surrounding barriers and facilitators of sports participation. Through coding by multiple researchers, six themes emerged. Themes indicated that athletes attributed participation to constructs of self-determination theory as well as overcoming specific barriers such as cost, time constraints, and lack of opportunity. Among facilitators to their athletic development, there were empowerment and advocacy, increased health, college scholarships, and achieving performance-related goals.
Gabriella McLoughlin, Courtney Weisman Fecske, Yvette Castaneda, Candace Gwin, and Kim Graber
Kenneth Aggerholm and Kristian Møller Moltke Martiny
This article contributes to the understanding of embodied practices and experiences within adapted physical activity. It presents a study of a 4-day winter sports camp for young people with cerebral palsy. The experiences of the participants were investigated through qualitative interviews. The findings are analyzed through a phenomenological framework of embodiment and the notions of body schema and body image. By paying special attention to the bodily experience of “I can,” this study shows that participants learned new ways of approaching challenges, gained bodily control in challenging situations, expanded their fields of possible actions through practicing, as well as learned to understand and accept themselves. These findings reveal central values of bodily interventions for people with cerebral palsy and have the potential to inform pedagogical work within the area of adapted physical activity.
Wendy M. Holmes and Madeleine E. Hackney
The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore the experiences of 16 individuals with Parkinson’s disease (PD) partaking in an adapted tango class and the perceived impact on participation and quality of life (QOL). The Ecology of Human Performance and the International Classification of Function were the theoretical frameworks for the study. Data collection involved focus groups conducted during the intervention and at a follow-up six months later. Data analysis followed inductive thematic analysis techniques. The themes addressed living with PD, the class structure and experiences, the participants’ expectations for the class, and the multiple effects experienced by participants at both time periods. The results suggest that adapted tango, when offered in a structured environment with skilled instruction, may improve skills for participation in daily activities and contribute to increased QOL for persons with PD.
Emma V. Richardson, Brett Smith, and Anthony Papathomas
Using a dialogical narrative approach, we explored how disabled people made sense of their gym experiences as part of a peer group. Interviews were conducted with 18 disabled people (10 men and 8 women, aged 23–60) who had experience exercising in the gym as part of a group. Data were rigorously analyzed using a dialogical narrative analysis. Within their peer group, participants crafted a collective story that they used to resist disablism in the gym. The dialogical components of the collective story functioned to (a) validate participants’ experiences of oppression in the gym, (b) forge an unspoken understanding with peers, (c) craft a more affirmative identity, and (d) instill a sense of empowerment in participants so that they can tell their own story. This study extends knowledge in the field of exercise and disability by showing that despite the oppression disabled people experienced in the gym, they can create a collective story, which is useful for helping to promote and sustain exercise in this space.
ZáNean McClain, E. Andrew Pitchford, E. Kipling Webster, and Daniel W. Tindall
Terese Wilhelmsen and Marit Sørensen
This systematic review examines research published from 2009 to 2015 on inclusion of children with disabilities in physical education according to the PRISMA guidelines. We have used a stakeholder approach as a framework for organizing and discussing the results. The searches yielded 535 studies, of which 112 were included. The systematic review outlines which stakeholder perspectives received the most attention, the main themes and findings, the methodological trends that governed the research contribution, and the country of data collection. The main findings indicated that perspectives of pre- and in-service teachers and studies of attitudes still dominate the research contributions. The strengths and limitations of the research conducted to date highlight that several other perspectives need to be discussed. Especially important is seeking information from children with disabilities themselves. Other barriers and facilitators perceived by those actively involved in the inclusion process need to be sought.
Shannon Titus Dieringer, David L. Porretta, and Diane Sainato
The purpose of our study was to determine the effect of music (music with lyrics versus music with lyrics plus instruction) relative to on-task behaviors in preschool children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in a gross motor setting. Five preschool children (4 boys, 1 girl) diagnosed with ASD served as participants. A multiple baseline across participants in conjunction with an alternating-treatment design was used. For all participants, music with lyrics plus instruction increased on-task behaviors to a greater extent than did music with lyrics. The results of our study provide a better understanding of the role of music with regard to the behaviors of young children with ASD.
Amelia Ferro, Guadalupe Garrido, Jorge Villacieros, Javier Pérez, and Lena Grams
Physical condition and an optimized diet are relevant to enhance performance and recovery. The diet composition and meal frequency of eleven elite wheelchair basketball players were estimated using a 3-day food-weighing diary in two months during the precompetitive-period. Performance was determined through a 20 m sprint test. The players consumed 4.2 ± 0.8 meals/day in May and 4.5 ± 0.9 meals/day in June, resulting in total energy intakes of 2492 ± 362 kcal/d and 2470 ± 497 kcal/d, respectively. The macronutrient distribution was 3.8 ± 1.3 g/kg carbohydrates, 1.7 ± 0.6 g/kg protein, and 36 ± 5% of energy derived from fat in May, and 4.2 ± 1.9 g/kg carbohydrates, 1.5 ± 0.5 g/kg protein and 32 ± 5% of energy derived from fat in June. The maximum velocity of the sprint test improved from 4.77 ± 0.31 m/s in May to 5.19 ± 0.23 m/s in June. Our results revealed carbohydrate intake below and fat intake above recommendations, but improvements of dietary patterns. Further nutritional advice is necessary to ensure health and performance improvements.
Michael S. Jeffress and William J. Brown
Power soccer (or powerchair football), the first competitive team sport for users of motorized wheelchairs, is receiving increased attention among people with disabilities, healthcare professionals, and academics. The present study provides a qualitative analysis of the experiences of 34 American power soccer athletes. Participant observation and in-depth interviews with 11 female and 23 male athletes were conducted between 2007 and 2013. Results indicate that involvement in power soccer provides participants with an increased sense of empowerment, acquisition of social capital, and psychosocial benefits, including a deep satisfaction of the desire to participate in competitive sports and an opportunity to be independent. Implications of these findings for improving the quality of life of people with physical disabilities and for future research are discussed.