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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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John R. Todorovich

Social constructivists posit that learning involves social interactions among individuals in a given place and time. Since teachers play a significant role in how social interactions are developed and determined in the school classroom, it is important to learn how teachers make decisions about their teaching behaviors and interactions with their students. Because extreme ego orientations have been shown to have a mediating effect on performance behavior in achievement settings, the purpose of this study was to investigate the potential mediating effect of an extreme ego orientation on preservice teachers’ perspectives on teaching physical education. Data collection consisted of two formal interviews, several informal interviews, and observations of the participants’ teaching. Five themes reflecting the teaching perspectives held by the participants emerged from the data: (a) teachers must maintain control and manage their classes, (b) the best students should be singled out, (c) physical education is an isolated subject area, (c) physical education and athletics are inherently linked, and (d) because only the best can do physical education well, teachers must grade on effort. Findings demonstrate how extreme ego orientations were actualized in preservice teachers’ perspectives of teaching.

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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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Thomas J. Martinek

There is considerable variability among students in the way they are affected by their teachers’ expectations for their future performance. The present article describes a model from which this variability can be partially explained. The model basically describes a series of mediating events that include (a) students’ perceptions of their teachers’ behaviors directed to them, (b) the students’ interpretation of the perceived teaching behaviors, and (c) the effects of the students’ interpretation of the teachers’ actions on their performance and/or behavior. Special attention will focus on the types of attributions students make when explaining the social interactions that transpire between them and their teacher during instruction. It is hoped that this article will increase the clarity of the Pygmalion phenomenon and provide some guidelines for future research in this area.

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Roger Cooper and Tang Tang

The 2012 Super Bowl was the most-watched television program in U.S. history and represented a wide-scale expansion to online and digital environments. This case study examined the role of gender in explanations for viewing the Super Bowl and for simultaneous media uses during the game. Results indicate that both men and women still relied on the traditional television for Super Bowl viewing. Newer media were used as a second-screen experience to complement the telecast or to gain additional information and social interaction. Gender differences underlie explanations for watching the Super Bowl on television and for simultaneous media uses. Findings suggest that women engaged with nonfootball elements that propel the Super Bowl from a sporting event to a societal event, whereas men indicated stronger interests in the game itself.

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Jeffrey D. Coelho

Written critical incidents were collected from students (n = 236) to investigate their perceptions of physical education at the United States Military Academy. Fourteen students were interviewed to provide perceptions beyond the confines of a specific incident. The data were classified into three themes: (a) teacher and teacher behaviors; (b) curriculum, program features, and subject matter; and (c) social interaction and behaviors of students. Within the first theme, encouragement, additional instruction, and demonstrations were the most frequently perceived positive influences. Inappropriate grading, public embarrassment, and adversarial relationships between teachers and students were the most frequently perceived negative influences. The positive influences within the curriculum theme were overcoming fear, relevance, and challenge. The negative influences were unfair grading standards, irrelevant content, and injury. Support and encouragement, acceptance, and effective leadership were the top ranked positive perceptions within the third theme. Poor leadership and lack of sportsmanship were associated with negative perceptions.

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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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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.

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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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Brendan Dwyer and Yongjae Kim

The contemporary sport fan has the ability to consume spectator sport through several means including event attendance, television and radio broadcasts, print publications, and Internet applications. Recently, an ancillary sport service, termed fantasy sports, has become one of the most popular activities among sport fans. As a result, the business of fantasy sports is booming. This study examined motivational dimensions underlying fantasy football participation from a Uses and Gratifications perspective. Utilizing Churchill’s (1979) five-step method for developing quality marketing measures, this study identified and validated three motivational dimensions: entertainment/escape, competition, and social interaction. The results suggest a pattern of fantasy football participation that is more purposeful and active than traditional media use. Discussed are the gambling associations, future research opportunities, and suggestions for developing fantasy football participation into a more creative and interactive marketing communication tool.