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Lucy McPhate, Emily M. Simek, Terry P. Haines, Keith D. Hill, Caroline F. Finch and Lesley Day

Background:

Group exercise has been shown to be effective in preventing falls; however, adherence to these interventions is often poor. Older adults’ preferences for how these programs can be delivered are unknown.

Objective:

To identify older people’s preferences for how group exercise programs for falls prevention can be delivered.

Design:

A two-wave, cross-sectional, state-wide telephone survey was undertaken. Respondents were community-dwelling men and women aged 70+ in Victoria, Australia.

Methods:

Open-ended questions were asked to elicit information regarding respondent preferences of the program, which were analyzed using a framework approach.

Results:

Ninetyseven respondents completed the follow-up survey. The results indicate that older adults most frequently report the short-term advantages and disadvantages when describing their preferences for group exercise, such as enjoyment, social interaction, and leader qualities. Longer-term advantages such as falls prevention were described less frequently.

Conclusions:

This study indicates the importance of interpersonal skills, and that the opportunity for social interaction should not be overlooked as a positive feature of a group exercise program.

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William McTeer and James E. Curtis

This study examines the relationship between physical activity in sport and feelings of well-being, testing alternative interpretations of the relationship between these two variables. It was expected that there would be positive relationships between physical activity on the one hand and physical fitness, feelings of well-being, social interaction in the sport and exercise environment, and socioeconomic status on the other hand. It was also expected that physical fitness, social interaction, and socioeconomic status would be positively related to psychological well-being. Further, it was expected that any positive zero-order relationship of physical activity and well-being would be at least in part a result of the conjoint effects of the other variables. The analyses were conducted separately for the male and female subsamples of a large survey study of Canadian adults. The results, after controls, show a modest positive relationship of physical activity and well-being for males but no such relationship for females. The predicted independent effects of the control factors obtained for both males and females. Interpretations of the results are discussed.

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Cynthia S. Teel, Paula Carson, Janet Hamburg and Alicia Ann Clair

The authors developed a program for older adults to improve spatial awareness and sense of balance while promoting person-environment interaction. Motivating Moves, a 20-min program of 14 movement sequences set to original music, was offered to 4 groups of older adults (N = 66, mean age = 80.97, SD = 7.34) during 6 weekly 1-hr sessions. Participants learned new movements during the First 5 weeks, and all movements were reviewed in the 6th week. Program evaluation was based on attendance-pattern data, self-report measures of program satisfaction, and focus-group interviews. Approximately 64% of enrollees (n = 42) completed the program, and attendance rates were high (>89%) for these individuals. Participants reported benefits of Motivating Moves’, such as enhanced posture awareness, improved sense of balance, and increased social interaction. Issues related to developing and offering a movement program with music are reviewed, with attention to potential difficulties and suggestions for program implementation.

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Theresa E. Boggess, David C. Griffey and Lynn D. Housner

Eleven elementary physical education teachers provided information about their perceptions of 251 students’ temperament characteristics and estimates of four student aptitudes: motor ability, social interaction skills, motivation, and to what level of their potential students generally worked. Estimates of the frequency that teachers would attend to each child in typical instructional situations were also gathered. Factor analysis of the temperament measures revealed three independent factors: physical sensitivity, adaptability, and reactivity/task orientation. Teachers’ decisions to attend to children were regressed on temperament factors and student aptitude measures. The findings indicated that motor ability was the most important variable teachers reported they would use in making decisions about allocating their attention during instruction. The temperament factor reactivity/task orientation was the next most important factor. The analyses suggested that teachers would consider adaptability of students only in organizational patterns that include the whole group.

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Catherine Quatman and Packianathan Chelladurai

The works of Kuhn (1996) and other scholars on the social construction of knowledge suggest that great insight can be gained about an academic field of study by investigating interaction patterns between and among scholars. Using a social network perspective, the intent of this study was to empirically explore the social interaction patterns among scholars in the field of sport management. A network model of coauthorship was generated using several rounds of sampling of scholars in the field and archival data collection from relevant journals. The derived network structure was then explored both visually and quantitatively for meaningful patterns. The results of the study essentially tell a story of the evolution and current state of the field’s collaboration structure. Drawing on propositions from the literature on the sociology of scientific knowledge generation, the findings are discussed relative to what the obtained network structure might hold for sport management scholarship.

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Stephen D. Ross, Jeffrey D. James and Patrick Vargas

The Team Brand Association Scale (TBAS), which is intended to measure professional sport team brand associations, was developed through the use of a free-thought listing technique in combination with a confirmatory factor analysis procedure. Information was provided by individuals regarding their favorite sports team, and 11 dimensions underlying professional sport team brand associations were identified: nonplayer personnel, team success, team history, stadium community, team play characteristics, brand mark, commitment, organizational attributes, concessions, social interaction, and rivalry. Review of the TBAS psychometric properties indicated that eight dimensions had acceptable reliabilities (Cronbach’s alpha scores ranging from .76-.90), as well as content validity (verified by a 3-member expert panel review), discriminant validity (based on correlations among latent constructs and their standard errors), concurrent validity (significant correlations with an external measure), and construct validity.

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Marcel Bouffard, E. Jane Watkinson, Linda P. Thompson, Janice L. Causgrove Dunn and Sandy K.E. Romanow

An activity deficit hypothesis was posited that children with movement difficulties are less physically active during recess than age- and gender-matched controls without movement difficulties. Criteria used in identifying children with movement difficulties were (a) a score of at least 4 on the Test of Motor Impairment, (b) regular physical education student, and (c) age 80 to 109 months. An observational study was conducted over a 2-month period in recess settings with 52 subjects. Findings revealed that during recess time, children with movement difficulties were vigorously active less often, played less often with large playground equipment, were not observable for significantly more time, and spent less time in positive social interactions with others of their own gender. Accordingly, it was concluded that the data support the activity deficit hypothesis.

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Alex C. Garn, David R. Ware and Melinda A. Solmon

High school physical education classes provide students with numerous opportunities for social interactions, but few studies have explored how social strivings impact class engagement. The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationships among 2 × 2 achievement goals, social motivation orientations, and effort in high school physical education classes using contemporary goal theory. A total of 105 ninth and tenth grade students reported their social motivation orientations, achievement goal orientations, and effort toward physical education. All four 2 × 2 achievement goals and three social motivation orientations had positive relationships with students’ self-reported effort in physical education. Further regression analysis revealed that mastery approach, performance avoidance, and social status goal orientations accounted for unique variance in explaining self-reported effort in high school physical education. Thus, students’ social strivings produce constructive outcomes in high school physical education and teachers who are able to promote healthy social climates can reap these benefits.

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Lupe Castañ and Claudine Sherrill

The purpose was to analyze the social construction of Challenger baseball opportunities in a selected community. Participants were 10 boys and 6 girls with mental and/or physical disabilities (ages 7 to 16 years, M = 11.31), their families, and the head coach. Data were collected through interviews in the homes with all family members, participant observation at practices and games, and field notes. The research design was qualitative, and critical theory guided interpretation. Analytical induction revealed five outcomes that were particularly meaningful as families and coach socially constructed Challenger baseball: (a) fun and enjoyment, (b) positive affect related to equal opportunity and feelings of “normalcy,” (c) social networking/emotional support for families, (d) baseball knowledge and skills, and (e) social interactions with peers.

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Randy M. Page, James Frey, Richard Talbert and Cindy Falk

Approximately 600 elementary school children (Grades 1-6) completed a loneliness rating scale and several fitness tests. Children who scored within low, average, and high ranges on the loneliness scale were compared to determine whether there were differences in levels of reported performance on fitness tests. ANCOVA tests revealed that lonely children were less physically fit and physically active than were those who were not lonely. Grade-specific analyses revealed that the relationship between levels of loneliness and physical fitness/physical activity appears to be most profound at the third- and fourth-grade levels. The results from this study suggest that lonely children may lack the social and/or physical skills necessary to effectively interact and function in group settings (physical activity is often a social activity for children). This could potentially perpetuate a cycle of poor social interaction, rejection or withdrawal, reduced physical activity, and reduced physical fitness.