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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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Bobbi A. Knapp

People commonly think of only men playing football. Football, however, has also been played by women for many years. Using a feminist interactionist framework, this study examines why women begin to play the game. The research questions that guided this study were: (1) what factors influence women’s decisions to play football? and (2) how do women begin to develop their identities as football players? Data were collected using participant observation over a two-year period and 10 semi-structured interviews. Some of the reasons participants stated for starting to play football were for their love of the sport, a desire to be a part of history, or the physicality of the sport. The women’s abilities and personal characteristics, significant others, and veteran players were crucial in the development of their identities as players. The information obtained could be used to bring more women into the sport.

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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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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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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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Nicholas Hirshon and Craig Davis

Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, a sports and entertainment arena in Long Island, New York, encountered a public relations challenge in the 1990s. Nassau Coliseum, one of a few high-capacity venues in the New York metropolitan area, hosted the New York Islanders of the National Hockey League and concerts featuring headliners such as the Grateful Dead, New Kids on the Block, and Frank Sinatra. Nevertheless, the arena became a target for the world’s first all-sports radio station, WFAN 660 AM in New York City. WFAN hosts perpetuated the image of a dreary “Nassau Mausoleum” with dim lighting, long bathroom and concession lines, and a leaky roof. By placing students in the decision-making situation that confronted the Nassau Coliseum executives, this case explores various approaches to reputation management at sports venues.

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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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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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Trent Stellingwerff

Anecdotal claims have suggested that an increasing number of ultramarathoners purposely undertake chronic low-carbohydrate (CHO) ketogenic diets while training, and race with very low CHO intakes, as a way to maximize fat oxidation and improve performance. However, very little empirical evidence exists on specific fueling strategies that elite ultramarathoners undertake to maximize race performance. The study’s purpose was to characterize race nutrition habits of elite ultramarathon runners. Three veteran male ultrarunners (M ± SD; age 35 ± 2 years; mass 59.5 ± 1.7 kg; 16.7 ± 2.5 hr 100-mi. best times) agreed to complete a competition-specific nutrition intake questionnaire for 100-mi. races. Verbal and visual instructions were used to instruct the athletes on portion sizes and confirm dietary intake. Throughout 2014, the athletes competed in 16 ultramarathons with a total of 8 wins, including the prestigious Western States Endurance Run 100-miler (14.9 hr). The average prerace breakfast contained 70 ± 16 g CHO, 29 ± 20 g protein, and 21 ± 8 g fat. Athletes consumed an average of 1,162 ± 250 g of CHO (71 ± 20g/hr), with minor fat and protein intakes, resulting in caloric intakes totaling 5,530 ± 1,673 kcals (333 ± 105 kcals/hr) with 93% of calories coming from commercial products. Athletes also reported consuming 912 ± 322 mg of caffeine and 6.9 ± 2.4 g of sodium. Despite having limited professional nutritional input into their fueling approaches, all athletes practiced fueling strategies that maximize CHO intake and are congruent with contemporary evidence-based recommendations.

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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.