The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of demographic dissimilarity from others on subsequent perceptions of differences and affective reactions toward physical activity classes. Students (N = 384) from a large southern university participated in the study. Structural equation modeling indicated that actual demographic dissimilarity from others in the class was positively related to perceptions of such differences. In addition, perceived demographic dissimilarity was positively associated with perceived deep-level differences (i.e., differences based on values, attitudes, and personality), which in turn negatively impacted affective reactions toward the class. Results are discussed in terms of theoretical contributions and implications for teaching physical activity classes.
Michael B. Edwards and George Cunningham
Racial health disparities are more pronounced among older adults. Few studies have examined how racism influences health behaviors. This study’s purpose was to examine how opportunities for physical activity (PA) and community racism are associated with older racial minorities’ reported engagement in PA. We also investigated how PA levels influenced health.
We analyzed survey data obtained from a health assessment conducted in 3360 households in Texas, USA, which included items pertaining to PA, community characteristics, and health.
Our sample contained 195 women and 85 men (mean age 70.16), most of whom were African American. We found no direct relationship between opportunities and PA. Results suggested that perceived community racism moderated this association. When community racism was low, respondents found ways to be active whether they perceived opportunities or not. When community racism was high, perceived lack of opportunities significantly impeded PA engagement. We found the expected association between PA and health.
Results suggested that negative effects of community racism were counteracted through increased opportunities for PA.
George B. Cunningham, Erin Buzuvis, and Chris Mosier
The purpose of this article is to articulate the need for a strong commitment to transgender inclusion in sport and physical activity, including in locker rooms and team spaces. The authors begin by defining key constructs and offering a theoretical overview of stigma toward transgender individuals. The focus then shifts to the changing opportunities for transgender athletes at all participation levels, case law and rulings germane to the topic, and the psychological, physical, and social outcomes associated with inclusion and exclusion. Next, the authors present frequently voiced concerns about transgender inclusion, with an emphasis on safety and privacy. Given the review, the authors present the case for inclusive locker rooms, which permit access by transgender athletes to facilities that correspond to their gender identity. The authors conclude with the official AKA position statement—“The American Kinesiology Association endorses inclusive locker rooms, by which we mean sex-segregated facilities that are open to transgender athletes on the basis of their gender identity”—and implications for sport and physical activity.
George B. Cunningham, Risa Isard, and E. Nicole Melton
Questions about transgender individuals’ place in sport persist. Therefore, the purpose of this paper was to focus on transgender inclusion in sport. Drawing from varied perspectives, the authors present five reasons for inclusion, basing their arguments on sport as a human right, fairness, gendered notions of athleticism, well-being, and economics. The authors then present a multilevel model for including transgender athletes, coaches, and administrators in sport, identifying factors at the macro-, meso-, and micro-levels of analysis.
George B. Cunningham, Janet S. Fink, and James J. Zhang
Four decades have passed since the publication of Perspectives on the Academic Discipline of Physical Education: A Tribute to G. Lawrence Rarick—an edited text that offered a comprehensive overview of the field at the time. Missing, however, was any discussion of sport management. Therefore, the purpose of this paper was to overview sport management and the development of the field since the publication of Brooks’s edited text. The authors summarize events in the field, including those related to educational advances and professional societies. Next, they highlight theoretical advances and then review the research in the field over time. In doing so, they categorize the scholarship into three groups: Young Field, Enduring Questions, and Emerging Trends. The authors conclude by identifying advances in the field and how sport management has emerged as a distinctive, robust discipline.