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Simon J. Roberts and Stuart J. Fairclough

The common practice of annually age grouping children in education, likely done under the assumption of similarly aged children sharing similar abilities and learner characteristics, may actually undermine equity and fairness in student assessments. This strategy has received criticism for (dis) advantaging those older children born closer to the “cut off” date for entry into an academic year and for promoting the existence of relative age effects (RAEs). This paper explores the possibility that RAEs may be prevalent in the end-of-year attainment levels of junior high school physical education (PE) students. The PE end-of-year attainment scores were collected from 582 students in grades 7, 8 and 9 (aged 11–14 years) in the United Kingdom (UK). The results from a one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) indicated a significant main effect for month of birth (p = .001) and gender (p = .001). Follow up interviews with heads of PE (HoPE) revealed a lack of awareness of RAEs and inconsiderate assessment strategies, which deviated from the requirements of the formal curriculum. The implications of RAEs in school PE assessment and possible recommendations are discussed.

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Colin J. Lewis, Simon J. Roberts, Hazel Andrews and Rebecca Sawiuk

Creative nonfiction writing is the literary technique employed in this article to explore insights and assist our understanding of an “alleged” sexual assault in a sport coach education environment. Creative nonfiction employs various narrative tools—characters, setting, figurative language, sequences of events, plot, sub-plot, and dialogue—designed to render the sensitive and controversial elements of sexual assault significant. Readers are, therefore, invited to engage with Stacey’s Story and reflect on the actions of both the perpetrator(s) and the victim. While there are risks associated with the sharing of stories, especially those which are considered dangerous, it is envisaged that Stacey’s Story will be viewed as an opportunity to develop more critical responses and advance our understanding of gender-based violence in sport.

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Robert J. Lake, Simon J. Eaves and Bob Nicholson

Anglo-American relations in tennis are a fascinating subject, particularly in the period of the late-19th/early-20th century, during which on- and off-court developments reflected and indicated broader societal shifts, as the US gradually replaced Britain as the world’s leading industrialized nation. This paper aims to discuss how Anglo-American relations in lawn tennis shifted throughout this period, from when lawn tennis was “invented” in Britain to the onset of the Great War, and to contextualize these developments in the light of shifting broader cultural relations more generally between both nations, alongside developments within sport and tennis more specifically. The following aspects are examined: attitudes toward the relative standards of both American and British players from correspondents of both nations in terms of their overall rank and possibilities of success; and, attitudes from tennis officials toward the formal organization of competitions between players of both nations.

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Simon J. Roberts, Lynne M. Boddy, Stuart J. Fairclough and Gareth Stratton

The aims of this study were firstly to examine whether there was an observed relative age effect in the cardiorespiratory fitness scores of 9-10 and 11-12 year old children, and secondly whether any observed effect was maintained after controlling for somatic maturity. Cardiorespiratory fitness data from 11,404 children aged 9-10 years and 3,911 children aged 11-12 years were obtained from a large cross-sectional field-based fitness testing program. A one-way ANOVA revealed a statistically significant relative age effect (p < .01) existed in the 20mSRT scores across all the age groups. Furthermore, ANCOVA analyses identified a statistically significant relative age effect was maintained after controlling for somatic maturation (p < .05). From a public health perspective these results confirm the existence of relative age effects for the first time and consequently may hold implications for relatively younger children in the accurate assessment of their cardiorespiratory fitness scores.

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Robert J. Vallerand, François L. Rousseau, Frédérick M.E. Grouzet, Alexandre Dumais, Simon Grenier and Céline M. Blanchard

Based on the Dualistic Model of Passion (Vallerand et al., 2003), a sequence involving the determinants and affective experiences associated with two types of passion (harmonious and obsessive) toward sport was proposed and tested. This sequence posits that high levels of sport valuation and an autonomous personality orientation lead to harmonious passion, whereas high levels of sport valuation and a controlled personality orientation facilitate obsessive passion. In turn, harmonious passion is expected to lead to positive affective experiences in sport but to be either negatively related or unrelated to negative affective experiences. Conversely, obsessive passion is hypothesized to be positively related to negative affective experiences in sport but to be either negatively related or unrelated to positive affective experiences. Results of three studies conducted with recreational and competitive athletes involved in individual and team sports provided support for the proposed integrative sequence. These findings support the role of passion in sport and pave the way to new research.