The authors conducted a systematic literature review on physical activity interventions for children and youth with visual impairment (VI). Five databases were searched to identify studies involving the population of interest and physical activity practices. After evaluating 2,495 records, the authors found 18 original full-text studies published in English they considered eligible. They identified 8 structured exercise-training studies that yielded overall positive effect on physical-fitness and motor-skill outcomes. Five leisure-time-physical-activity and 5 instructional-strategy interventions were also found with promising proposals to engage and instruct children and youth with VI to lead an active lifestyle. However, the current research on physical activity interventions for children and youth with VI is still limited by an absence of high-quality research designs, low sample sizes, use of nonvalidated outcome measures, and lack of generalizability, which need to be addressed in future studies.
Otávio Luis Piva da Cunha Furtado, Kelly Allums-Featherston, Lauren Joy Lieberman and Gustavo Luis Gutierrez
Keith R. Johnston, Donna L. Goodwin and Jennifer Leo
Dignity, as an essential quality of being human, has been overlooked in exercise contexts. The aim of this interpretative phenomenological study was to understand the meaning of dignity and its importance to exercise participation. The experiences of 21 adults (11 women and 10 men) from 19 to 65 yr of age who experience disability, who attended a specialized community exercise facility, were gathered using the methods of focus-group and one-on-one interviews, visual images, and field notes. The thematic analysis revealed 4 themes: the comfort of feeling welcome, perceptions of otherness, negotiating public spaces, and lost autonomy. Dignity was subjectively understood and nurtured through the respect of others. Indignities occurred when enacted social and cultural norms brought dignity to consciousness through humiliation or removal of autonomy. The specialized exercise environment promoted self-worth and positive self-beliefs through shared life experiences and a norm of respect.
Phil Esposito, ZáNean McClain and Daniel W. Tindall
Marion E. Hambrick, Mary A. Hums, Glenna G. Bower and Eli A. Wolff
Elite athletes require the most advanced sports equipment to maintain their competitive edge, but manufacturers cannot always satisfy these athletes’ specific equipment needs. Sport involvement can influence sports-equipment selections and is described as the process by which individuals rely on attitudes and belief systems to make sports-related consumption decisions. This study involved semistructured interviews with 5 elite Parasport athletes to identify and analyze the role of sport involvement in their selection of sports equipment. The results revealed that the athletes identified product limitations, created a collaborative environment, and promoted a culture of innovation to develop new sports products and address existing limitations. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.
Justin A. Haegele and David Porretta
The purpose of this article was to review published research literature on physical activity for school-age individuals with visual impairments by describing study characteristics and major findings. Keyword searches were used to identify articles from electronic databases published from 1982 to June 2013. Eighteen articles met all inclusion criteria, and relevant data such as participants, visual-impairment levels, theory, measurement, and dependent variables were extracted from them. Of the 18 studies, 5 were descriptive, 6 correlational, and 7 were interventions. Only 4 studies explicitly stated a theoretical or conceptual framework. Major findings suggest that low physical activity levels of school-age individuals with visual impairments may be related to perceived participation barriers including the availability of appropriate opportunities rather than visual acuity or educational setting.
Andrea R. Taliaferro, Lindsay Hammond and Kristi Wyant
The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of completion of an adapted physical education (APE) course with an associated on-campus practicum on preservice physical educators’ self-efficacy beliefs toward the inclusion of individuals with specific disabilities (autism, intellectual disabilities, physical disabilities, and visual impairments). Preservice students in physical education teacher education (N = 98) at a large U.S. Midwestern university enrolled in 1 of 2 separate 15-wk APE courses with an associated 9-wk practicum experience were surveyed at the beginning, middle, and conclusion of each course. Results of 4 separate 2-factor fixed-effect split-plot ANOVAs revealed significant improvements in self-efficacy beliefs from Wk 1 to Wk 8 and from Wk 1 to Wk 15 across all disability categories. Significant differences between courses were found only for autism in Time 1.
Kate Ferrara, Jan Burns and Hayley Mills
Despite some changes to the way that people with intellectual disabilities (ID) are viewed in society, negative attitudes prevail. One of the aspirations of the 2012 Paralympic games was to influence the public’s attitudes toward people with disabilities. The aim of this study was to investigate whether stimuli depicting people with ID performing at Paralympic level of competition change attitudes toward ID. A mixed randomized comparison design was employed comparing 2 groups: those who viewed Paralympic-level ID sport footage and information and those who viewed Olympic footage and information. One hundred fourteen students, mean age 25 yr, were administered measures of implicit (subconscious) attitudes toward disability and explicit (belief-based) attitudes toward ID. Implicit attitudes significantly changed in a positive direction for both groups. The findings provide evidence that both Paralympic (ID) and Olympic media coverage may have at least a short-term effect on attitudes toward people with disabilities.
Katie Brooker, Allyson Mutch, Lyn McPherson, Robert Ware, Nick Lennox and Kate Van Dooren
To better understand how physical activity programs may contribute to improved health and social-support outcomes for people with intellectual disability, the authors conducted semistructured interviews with 11 people with intellectual disability and community-based volunteers in Brisbane, Australia. Three broad themes emerged: individual factors that generally facilitated activity, external factors that posed barriers to participation, and broader normative factors that directed participation. A key reflection arising out of the thematic analysis was that participants with intellectual disability and volunteers highlighted subtle but pervasive differences in barriers and facilitators to being active. Recommendations are provided for interventions aiming to improve physical activity and social support among those with intellectual disability. The authors’ research process demonstrates the utility of seeking the views of potential participants before program rollout to inform implementation and demonstrates the usefulness of a qualitative, actively inclusive approach to health interventions.