A child’s first contact with media and culture typically comes from books they are exposed to in the home and at school. The narratives presented contribute to the early reinforcement of gender roles and norms and can greatly influence the way that young girls perceive and experience sport. The purpose of this study was to explore the narratives within sport-based books geared toward a young female audience to determine the extent to which they promote the engagement of girls in sport. A pragmatic literature search was conducted to obtain books that met our inclusion criteria. Books (n = 28) were analyzed based on the age of their intended audience (aged 3–5, 6–8, and 9–12 years) using thematic narrative analysis. Although the authors promoted the engagement of girls in sport, underlying gender stereotypes were nevertheless salient. Across the books, themes involved the emphasis of “feminine” sports as a context for diversity and learning, the need to understand development as a process, the importance of relationships, and implications pertaining to perceptions of capability as female athletes. Most importantly, the application of a critical feminist lens enabled us to identify an underlying theme—the reinforcement of gender stereotypes—that permeated the storylines and served to undermine the potential adaptive messaging intended by authors. These findings suggest the need for greater attention toward the complexity of female sport and a cultural shift in thinking toward gender equity rather than simply increasing sport access for female participants.
Jennifer T. Coletti, Veronica Allan, and Luc J. Martin
Emily A. Roper and José A. Santiago
The purpose of this study was to examine how and how often athletic girls were represented on the cover art of young adult (YA) sport fiction. In this research, 154 YA sport fiction books were analyzed using quantitative content analysis. Using existing sport research and theory focused on women’s representation in sport media, the researchers developed a coding scheme to assess cover art for each of the following categories: (a) presence and racial representation of female character/s on cover; (b) portrayal of female body on cover (whole body, partial body/with head, or partial body/without head); (c) portrayal of female character as active or passive; (d) portrayal of female character in or out of athletic uniform; (e) portrayal of female character in or out of the sport setting; (f) presence of sport equipment; and (g) type of cover. Findings revealed that 81% of the book covers had a female character in which 29% of the covers displayed the whole body, 47% displayed partial body/with head, and 23% displayed partial body/with no head of the female character. Only 0.06% of the book covers had a female character of color. Approximately 31% of the female characters were displayed in active positioning, 58% in athletic attire, and 44% in the sport setting. Of the books reviewed, 55% displayed equipment on the cover. The findings indicate that athletic girls have few images on YA sport fiction cover art that accurately represent their athleticism, and there is a clear absence of diverse representation. It is critical that those responsible for the design and layout of book covers clearly represent active females in action, in uniform, and in the sport context.
Wendy O’Brien, Caroline Riot, and Clare Minahan
In this paper, the authors explore how athletes from the Global South interact with the material environment of an international training camp program in the lead up to a major event. Set within the context of Pasifika nations with colonial and missionary legacies, they examine the material, affective, sensory, and rhythmic forces at work to produce enabling or constraining capacities for emplaced physical capital in athletes. Driven by a desire to improve their performance, athletes resisted, appropriated, and adopted various high-performance practices to develop their emplaced physical capital capacities.
Zachary W. Arth and Andrew C. Billings
This study analyzed the frequency with which the regional broadcasts of the 30 Major League Baseball (MLB) teams featured traditional and modern/advanced statistics. To understand these portrayals, 60 games, two from each MLB team, were coded. The coded content consisted of any on-screen graphic featuring one or multiple baseball statistics, as well as any comment from the broadcasters about statistics. The results indicated a clear spectrum of teams, with some featuring a high level of advanced metrics in their graphics and commentary, while some were substantially more traditional. Through the lens of framing, potential ramifications for statistical knowledge within different fan bases were discussed.
John H. Challis
The results of the 2020 review and ranking of U.S. doctoral programs in kinesiology conducted by the National Academy of Kinesiology (NAK) are presented. These results represent data collected for the 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019 calendar years for 43 programs. The rankings reflect data collected on program faculty (productivity, funding, and visibility) and program students (admissions, support, publications, and employment). The data for each assessment index were first transformed into z scores, and then the z scores converted into T-scores. Weights were applied to the T-scores of the indices and then summed to obtain a total T-score. Programs were ranked in two ways: one based on the total T-scores from the data not normalized (unadjusted) and the other with total T-scores from the data normalized with respect to the number of faculty members in each program (adjusted). In addition to program rankings, descriptive data are presented on faculty and student data.
Joshua I. Newman, Grace Yan, Hanhan Xue, and Nicholas M. Watanabe
In this article, the authors provide a Deleuzoguattarian tracing of a specific set of relationships between traditional Chinese medicine, life, death, and football (soccer). More specifically, the authors examine political, economic, and cultural associations formed in and around the Quanjian Group, a major traditional Chinese medicine company once located in the burgeoning industrial hub of Tianjin. The authors follow Aihwa Ong in abductively examining (de)territorializations of life, sport, and death; examining how the media publics’ (in China and beyond) awareness of the death of a young girl in 2015 destabilized a network of capital, state, medicine, and sport and in the process revealed how the vitality of major professional sport in China is situated within, and contingent upon, a vast array of material and nonmaterial (bio)political formations.
In this paper, which is a revised and modified version of the 2019 North American Society for the Sociology of Sport Alan Ingham Memorial lecture, the author shares four views, contributions, and opportunities that sports sociologists might consider useful in how to decolonize as well as indigenize our discipline together. The need to actively engage in the theory and practice of how to decolonize while understanding what it also means to work toward becoming an accomplice, activist, ally, or co-resistor are important threads underpinning the nature and scope of this paper. The author concludes with a plea to sports sociologists that decolonizing our minds is as much a collective effort as it is an act of reconciliation while maintaining the promise of inclusion, equity, and human rights. As sports sociologists, understanding what it means to be in “good relations” with Indigenous Peoples is fundamental to how we continue to build on and improve our discipline together.
James Brighton, Robert C. Townsend, Natalie Campbell, and Toni L. Williams
In this paper we explore current theoretical approaches available from the discipline of critical disability studies (CDS) for conceptualizing physical disability and advocate how these understandings can advance sociological research on disability sport. After reviewing a dominant “models” approach that has historically been employed, we illuminate how theoretical architecture provided by selected sociological theorists (Pierre Bourdieu, Michel Foucault, and Zygmunt Bauman) and from aesthetic, cyborg, and new materialist approaches can help reveal the materialist conditions, sociocultural structures, and lived realities of disability. In doing so, we appeal to researchers of disability sport to develop critical understandings of why alternative theoretical approaches are valuable, what theoretical choices to make, and how we can use theory to highlight oppression and empower those involved in disability sport.
Scott W.T. McNamara, Matthew Shaw, Kylie Wilson, and Angela Cox
Educational podcasts are developed specifically for learning purposes. Preliminary research suggests that many college courses and practitioners regularly use educational podcasts and that this medium is a beneficial tool to use to supplement the learning process. However, there is limited scholarly work examining the use of educational podcasts within kinesiology fields. Thus, the purpose of this study was to conduct a scoping review of the literature on the use of educational podcasts in the field of kinesiology. The Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews extension for Scoping Reviews Checklist guided this investigation. Six databases were searched. Fourteen articles met the full inclusion criteria. Of these, 11 were data-driven research articles, and three were practitioner articles. Much of the research identified lacked critical information related to research design, instrument development, and findings. Thus, the authors recommend that more rigorous research in this area be conducted to discern the impact of educational podcasts within the field of kinesiology.
L. Jayne Beselt, Michelle C. Patterson, Meghan H. McDonough, Jennifer Hewson, and Scott MacKay
Physical activity (PA) and social support have known benefits for the well-being and health of older adults, and social support is associated with PA behavior and positive affective experiences in PA contexts. The aim of this study was to synthesize qualitative research conducted on the experiences of social support related to PA among older adults (age ≥55 years). Following meta-study methodology, the authors searched nine databases and extracted information from 31 studies. Results were synthesized in terms of common themes and in light of theoretical and methodological perspectives used. The qualitative literature identifies supportive behaviors and social network outcomes which may be useful for informing how best to support older adults to be physically active. This literature rarely reflected the experiences of vulnerable populations, and future research should aim to further understand supportive behaviors which enable older adults to overcome barriers and challenges to being physically active.