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Frank M. Brasile

The data used for statistical analysis in this investigation were based on results from 79 males tested at the National Wheelchair Basketball Association/Paralyzed Veterans of America wheelchair basketball camp held at Wright State University in August 1989. Results acquired from a multivariate analysis of variance indicated significant differences in scores across NWBA player classification levels. Post hoc comparisons indicated that Class II and Class III participants were similar and that Class I participants recorded lower overall skills proficiency scores. A stepwise forward regression analysis was conducted to determine the influence of predictor variables on skill proficiency levels. Results indicate that one’s level of disability may influence performance; however, amount of time spent in practice, previous experience in the sport, and age also influence one’s overall performance in wheelchair basketball.

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Miriam C. Morey, Carola Ekelund, Megan Pearson, Gail Crowley, Matthew Peterson, Richard Sloane, Carl Pieper, Eleanor McConnell and Hayden Bosworth

The authors describe a medical center-based randomized trial aimed at determining the feasibility and effectiveness of partnering patients and primary-care providers with an exercise health counselor. Study participants included 165 veterans age 70 years and older. The primary end point was change in physical activity at 3 and 6 months comparing patients receiving high-intensity physical activity counseling, attention control counseling, and usual care after receiving standardized clinic-based counseling. We noted a significant Group × Time interaction (p = .041) for physical activity frequency and a similar effect for caloric expenditure (p = .054). Participants receiving high-intensity counseling and usual care increased physical activity over the short term, but those with usual care returned to baseline by the end of the study. The intervention was well received by practitioners and patients. We conclude that partnering primary-care providers with specialized exercise counselors for age- and health-appropriate physical activity counseling is effective.

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Robert J. Schinke, Alain P. Gauthier, Nicole G. Dubuc and Troy Crowder

The study of adaptation in elite sport delineates the adjustment strategies of amateur and professional athletes during career transitions (e.g., promotion, relocation). Fiske (2004) recently identified 5 core motives as the vehicles to adaptation: belonging, understanding, controlling, self-enhancement, and trusting. The goal was to verify and contextualize these core motives with 2 respondent groups of professional athletes from the National Hockey League. The groups consisted of those experiencing rookie adaptation and veteran adaptation. A total of 58 athletes were divided into groups representing the Canadian mainstream, Canadian Aboriginal culture, and Europe. There were 175 newspaper articles that were retrieved using online and library resources. The similarities and discrepancies in and across groups provides insight into this hard-to-reach population.

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Mark A. Eys, Albert V. Carron, Mark R. Beauchamp and Steven R. Bray

The general purpose of the present study was to examine the nature of role ambiguity in sport teams and to explore the construct validity of the operational definition of role ambiguity developed by Beauchamp, Bray, Eys, and Carron (2002). Role ambiguity was operationalized as a multidimensional construct (Scope of Responsibilities, Behavioral Responsibilities, Evaluation of Performance, and Consequences of Not Fulfilling Responsibilities) that occurs in two contexts, offense and defense. Consistent with the a priori hypothesis, perceptions of role ambiguity exhibited some degree of within-group consistency and group-level variability, but most of the variance in role ambiguity was seen at the individual level. Also, perceptions of role ambiguity decreased from early to late season. Finally, veteran athletes experienced less role ambiguity than first-year athletes at the beginning of the season, but not at the end. Implications of the findings and suggestions for future research are discussed.

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Thomas J. Templin, Bevan Grant, Andrew Sparkes and Paul Schempp

This case study focuses on a late career, male teacher/coach and reveals the multidimensionality of his life and career. It demonstrates the influence of significant career and life events, as well as the social context in which the teacher/coach works. Overall, a life history approach describes the paradox of the employment/accommodation of a veteran elementary teacher as a physical educator at the secondary school in which he coaches. This study reveals the marginality of physical education and its teachers at the secondary school level in contrast to the importance of interscholastic athletics and those who serve in varsity coaching roles. The study shows how the teacher studied is both a good-fit and a weak-fit stayer (Yee, 1990). Equally, it demonstrates how one’s conception of self (Nias, 1985) relates to professional and personal circumstance. Finally, the research demonstrates the value of and need for biographical research in sport pedagogy.

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Raquel Carvalho, Olga Vasconcelos, Pedro Gonçalves, Filipe Conceição and João Paulo Vilas-Boas

Exercise seems to attenuate the postural control system and anticipatory postural adjustments (APAs) decline, but no conclusive findings are available. This study analyses, in elderly people, the exercise effect in APAs during the raising of a load with both arms in the sagittal plane. Twenty eight males over the age of 60 (65,8 ± 4,07 yr old)—9 veterans in exercising, 9 who exercise recently, and 10 sedentary—were asked to raise a load with both arms simultaneously to shoulder level, in standing position, as fast as possible. It was studied the electromyography (EMG) pattern of the main muscles. The APAs were quantified through the time integral of EMG records (iEMG). Anticipatory changes in the postural muscles were seen in all groups. We observed, in the tibialis anterior activity, a higher significant activation in the sedentary compared with the other groups, suggesting that exercise can modulate the postural control system.

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Rylee Dionigi

The number of older athletes is growing with the aging of populations across the developed world. This article reviews studies from a variety of disciplines that focus specifically on the motives and experiences of older adults competing in physically demanding sports at events such as masters and veterans competitions in Australia or the Senior Olympics in North America. It is shown that the majority of research into this phenomenon has taken a quantitative approach or failed to consider older athletes’ experiences in the context of broader sociocultural discourses. Therefore, using the author’s research into the experiences of older Australian masters athletes as a catalyst, the need for and strength of sociological qualitative research in this area is discussed. The use of qualitative methods, such as in-depth interviews and observations, and interpretive analysis provided alternative ways of making sense of older adults and their relationship with competitive sport to what is typically found in the sport and aging literature.

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Nancy Hamilton

A study was undertaken to determine the kinematic nature of the decline in sprint velocity that has been found to occur with aging. Subjects included 162 Master’s sprinters ranging in age from 30 to 94 years. Data were collected at a national championship meet and a World Veterans Championships through use of videotape and the Peak Performance Motion Measurement System. From the digitized videotape data, measures of sprint stride velocity, stride length, stride period, support time, swing time, flight time, and hip, knee, and trunk range of motion were calculated. Velocity, stride length, flight time, swing time, and range of motion in the hip and knee all decreased significantly (p<.05) with age, whereas stride period and support time increased. Further, the proportional relationship between the components of the stride was significantly (p<.05) altered. From this it was inferred that as these sprinters aged there was a decreased ability to exert muscle force as well as a decreased ability to move quickly through a full range of lower extremity motion.

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Kevin Patton and Linda L. Griffin

This article describes comparative case studies of 2 of 12 veteran middle school physical education teachers participating in the Assessment Initiative for Middle School Physical Education (AIMS-PE), a reform-based teacher development project. The goals of the project were to help teachers examine and reframe their assessment practices and to design and implement curricular programs that encourage active teaching and learning. The following research questions guided this study: (a) What are the ways in which teachers changed their practices and/or beliefs concerning physical education teaching and assessment of student learning? and (b) what factors, both personal and institutional, influenced the level of changes (i.e., materials, teaching approaches, beliefs) experienced by each teacher? Three patterns of change were prominent in the teachers’ experiences: (1) increased planning and more efficient organization and management, (2) improved alignment of instruction processes and assessments, and (3) a shift in teacher roles characterized by the use of more indirect pedagogies to facilitate student-oriented small-sided games and student peer assessment. Even though these teachers made substantial changes, major shifts in assessment and instructional practices were not accomplished overnight. Changes required time, opportunity, and ongoing support.

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Randy C. Battochio, Robert J. Schinke, Danny L. Battochio, Wayne Halliwell and Gershon Tenenbaum

Through adaptation studies in elite sport, researchers can delineate the strategies that amateur and professional athletes employ during career transitions (e.g., promotion, relocation). Fiske (2004) identified five core motives as catalysts to adaptation: understanding, controlling, self-enhancement, belonging, and trusting, which were recently contextualized in sport as a result of one archival study examining the second hand experiences of National Hockey League (NHL) players. The purpose of the present study was to learn about the adaptation process of NHL players based on a first hand data source (i.e., semi-structured interview). A semi-structured open-ended interview guide was utilized to learn about the experiences of four groups of NHL players (n = 11): prospects (n = 3), rookies (n = 3), veterans (n = 2), and retirees (n = 3). There is an indication that adaptation strategies and sub-strategies vary according to the player’s career stage and the challenges related to seeking and maintaining a roster spot. The findings are also consistent with Fiske’s five core motives and earlier adaptation sub-strategies, in addition to uncovering three novel sub-strategies (i.e., understanding one’s performance, distraction control, and trusting player agents). Implications and recommendations are provided for sport researchers and practitioners.