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Megan M. Buning

The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between coach expectations, female athletes’ perceptions of coach behavior, and motivation to play softball, and to observe changes in perceptions of behavior and motivation by expectancy group. Self-determination theory (SDT; Ryan & Deci, 2000) was used as a guide. Participants were randomly selected from Division I softball teams competing in the United States (n = 20). Head coaches (n = 20) completed evaluations rating expectations of athletes’ performance ability, and athletes (n = 148) self-reported motivation and perceived coaching behaviors pre- and post-study. Cluster analysis distinguished between three expectancy groups based from coach expectation ratings: High, low, and average. Pearson’s r revealed weak relationships between coach expectancy ratings, perceived coaching behaviors, and motivation. Split-plot analysis of variance tests revealed expectancy groups perceived behaviors differently and were motivated differently. Low expectancy athletes perceived more non-rewarding behaviors, less positive behaviors, and were more non-self-determined to play softball. Overall, coaches were perceived as mostly positive.

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Monica A. Kunesh, Cynthia A. Hasbrook and Rebecca Lewthwaite

Premised on an interactive socialization as construction and internalization approach, physical activity socialization experiences related to peer interactions and associated affective responses in physical activity settings were explored among eight 11- to 12-year-old girls. Three possible physical activity choices (formal sport, informal physical activity, and exercise) were considered. Three methods of data collection were employed: observation, sociometric evaluation, and interview. Physical activity socialization experiences were found to be context specific both in terms of activity type (formal sport, informal physical activity, and exercise) and social situation (home and school). Boys in physical education classes appeared to be the major source of negative peer treatment, primarily by criticizing girls’ physical skill performances and constructing them as subordinate to those of the boys. Positive or negative affective responses to peer treatment were reported to lead to the seeking or avoidance of future physical activity involvement. The type of attributions participants made for the negative treatment they received was related to their affective responses and subsequent desire to seek or avoid future activity.

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James M. Pivarnik, Christopher P. Connolly, Mallory R. Marshall and Rebecca A. Schlaff

Previous research clearly indicates that exercise training decreases during pregnancy, even among the fittest of women. Despite this, women are typically able to resume their prepregnancy exercise routines soon after delivery, and in some instances, their postpartum performances are better than previously experienced. While anecdotal reports are common, there does not appear to be significant research data to explain this phenomenon. In this review, we explore possible physiologic explanations for heightened postpartum exercise performance, such as pregnancy related changes in aerobic fitness, lactate threshold, flexibility, and musculoskeletal fitness. At this time, limited data do not appear to support an ergogenic role for these variables. Another consideration is a positive change in a woman’s psyche or perceptions toward her athletic abilities as a result of her pregnancy and delivery. While this concept is theoretically possible and may have scientific merit, data are sparse. What is clear is that an increasing number of women are maintaining their physical activity and exercise routines during pregnancy, with many able to return to competition soon after delivery. Well-designed studies are needed to further explore the relationships among physiologic and psychological variables and postpartum exercise performance. Ideally, these studies should be prospective (studying women prepregnancy through the postpartum period) and include diverse samples of women with regard to activity type and fitness level.

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Diane M. Wiese-Bjornstal, Ayanna N. Franklin, Tara N. Dooley, Monique A. Foster and James B. Winges

Injuries contrast with the overwhelmingly positive benefits of sports participation for female athletes, with estimates of a third or more of all female athletes sustaining injury in any given season. Media headlines convey the impression that female athletes are more vulnerable to sports injuries than male athletes are. This observation led to our first purpose, which was to use evidence from the sports injury surveillance literature to examine the facts about female athlete risks of injury and compare these risks to those of male athletes. In light of Gill and Kamphoff’s (2010) observation that we largely ignore or underrepresent female experiences in the sport and exercise psychology literature, our second purpose was to highlight examples of the psychological, behavioral, and social aspects of female athletes’ injury experiences, and provide comparisons to male experiences within this realm of sports medicine psychology. These evidence-based observations guide our concluding recommendations for injury reporting, prevention, and rehabilitation roles of those in the media and sports professions.

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Daniel G. Renfrow, Terrence L. Wissick and Christopher M. Guard

Drawing on 251 incident reports, this study explores American football fans’ decisions to rush the field to celebrate a victory despite pleas from university officials and the police to abstain. We explore the symbolic interactions through which students defined this situation and acted within it. Our findings characterize this event as series of ongoing interactions wherein meaning and action are continually (re)negotiated. Campus rumors normalized the act of rushing by locating it and the student role within local tradition. Through interactions with other students in the stadium and by drawing on knowledge of prior sports tragedies, fans assessed the risks of participating and selected among lines of action ranging from “going to be with others” and “getting out of the way” to “going with the flow.” Ultimately, however, public address announcements, the loss of bodily control, and the inability to direct other people’s actions aligned competing definitions of the situation into one of emergency. We conclude by discussing the theoretical and practical implications of these findings.

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Gertrud Pfister

In Germany there is a huge discrepancy between positive attitudes toward physical activity and actual practice of sport. According to representative studies more than 80% of the population is convinced that for various reasons, especially those of health, it is very important to take up a sport (Kaschuba, 1989). However, only 21% of the male and no more than 14% of the female population (older than 14) were reported to practice a sport at least once a week (Opaschowski, 1995).

This article focuses on the question of how a relationship to sport develops in the course of the lives of girls and women. The empirical data derives from a project on “Sport in the Lives of Women” in which women active in football (soccer), gymnastics/aerobics and tennis were interviewed about their biographies and their experience with physical activities. The theoretical background is based on approaches towards life course and biography, gender and gender relations, and socialization. Typical patterns of sport involvement in the different stages of life, e.g. the important role of the parents in early childhood and the importance of peers at school were found.,.

In addition, different types of sport commitment could be identified. Certain patterns, for example, were dependent on the combination of the simultaneous practice of different types of sport and the alternation between practice and non-practice of sport. In this way it was possible to distinguish between all-round sportswomen and women who practice sport for reasons of health. In general, sport biographies develop through the close interaction of social factors and individual decisions.

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Jorid Hovden

The Norwegian Confederation of Sports, the non-profit umbrella organization for all organized sports in Norway, has gradually accepted women’s demands for equal opportunities and full integration at all levels. The situation for women in sports politics and coaching today is characterized by male dominance as well as high drop-out rates and recruiting problems among women.

The aim of the investigation, as basis for this article, was to give women’s experiences within elected posts and coaching a public voice and elaborate why women hesitate to involve themselves or drop-out after a short period of time. The following questions are outlined and discussed:

- What motivates women to take up elected posts and coaching? - What experiences do women have after holding such posts and roles? - What problems and challenges seem to be difficult to face and handle?

The analytical perspective was inspired by the feminist critique of organizations as gender-neutral arenas, and Bourdieu’s analysis of dominance and power within social fields. The empirical material consisted of questionnaire data and data from a search conference. The sample consisted of women holding elected posts, as well as, female coaches.

Based upon the results women as a group within male domains were not empowered to raise and articulate interests and needs as women. The respondents reported an awareness of barriers, role conflicts and dilemmas, but lacked most often the ability to initiate collective emancipatory changes. The established male-dominated practices were seen as selfevident and natural. Many women chose the strategy of exit as the solution to their situation, because the cost of promoting change outweighed the benefits.

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Leticia Oseguera, Dan Merson, C. Keith Harrison and Sue Rankin

and well-being of current college athletes. In the 2015 study, three-quarters of NCAA men and women (slightly higher among women and in Division III) reported that their overall academic experience had been positive ( NCAA, 2016 ). The core purpose of the NCAA is to ensure positive athletic and

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Cora Burnett

The voices of South African feminists and womanists are relatively absent from public debates concerning women’s participation and empowerment in sport. This paper represents a contribution to the gender discourse, drawing on feminist paradigms and reflecting on the marginality of South African women in society and in sport. The findings of two separate studies, undertaken in 1977 and 1999 respectively, are reported. The research focused on the assessment of the impact of the Sports Leaders Programme (as part of the South Africa-United Kingdom Sports Initiative) and the junior component of the sports development programme initiated by the Australian Sports Commission (Super Kidz). Data were collected by means of structured interviews from different stakeholders at macro- (national), meso- (community/institutional) and micro- (individual) levels. A representative sample for the Sports Leaders Programme included 17 co-ordinators and facilitators (at national and provincial levels) and nine sports leaders at community level. To obtain qualitative data concerning the Super Kidz Programme, two provinces were targeted for data collection. A quota sample of seven schools was selected as the experimental group (having introduced the programme) and five schools in close proximity acted as controls. One hundred and forty-four role-players at different levels of participation were interviewed. To obtain some triangulation of data, 110 role-players also participated in focus groups. The data reflecting the position and involvement of women in these programmes were analysed. Against the reality of the majority of women living in conditions of chronic poverty, exposed to patriarchy, being ideologically stereotyped and structurally marginalized, they were, to a large extent absent, and their efforts unrecognised in the institutionalised domain of sport. It was concluded that sport is a severely gendered domain in which male hegemony is acted out and perpetuated whereas women in impoverished communities view access to sport as peripheral in their everyday struggle for material survival. National agencies should therefore not rely on female volunteers to facilitate sports development in impoverished communities but to strategize differently while also redressing ideological and structural gender inequalities in the wider social context.

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Carolyn Vos Strache, Alana Strong and Cheree Peterson

The omnipresent physical self remains for young adult females a significant measure of self-worth. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that coping strategies are as complex as they are pervasive as young women strive to maintain positive psychological outlooks despite negatively-perceived physical attributes. Self-presentational concerns may affect one’s activity choice.

This study expands on the work of Taylor, Neter, and Wayment (1995) to determine which motives guide the self-evaluation processes of the physical self. An examination of structured interviews identifies which motives direct women in the self-evaluation of their bodies, and concurrently examines whether different motives determine individual response when appraising a “good” versus “not good” physical aspect. Motives, as defined by Taylor et al. (1995), were self-enhancement, self-verification, self-improvement and self-assessment. Interviews were conducted with 30 female, Southern California, undergraduate college students from Southern California, ranging in age from 19-22.

A chi-square analysis revealed that women employed different motives in “good” versus “not good” body aspect comparisons (Enhancement: X2 = 21.78 p< .01; Verification: X2 = 10.05 p< .01; Improvement: X2 = 5.15 p< .05). When describing a “good” aspect, women employed the enhancement motive 92 percent of the time, verification 80 percent of the time, and improvement 15 percent of the time. For “not good” aspects, women used enhancement motive 53 percent of the time, verification 98 percent of the time, and improvement 33 percent of the time. Women used more than one motive 74 percent of the time and single motives only 26 percent of the time in the evaluation process. Direct quotes reveal that almost all the women sought out information about themselves when they thought it would reflect favorably. However, when they reported on a “not good” aspect, coping mechanisms included redirecting their attention to more positive characteristics or mentally cordoning off an area of weakness to prevent that attribute from permeating all aspects of their identity. Understanding how we think in the self-evaluation process may offer an explanation why some people are motivated to exercise and why others are not.