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Monica A.F. Lounsbery, Thomas L. McKenzie, Stewart Trost and Nicole J. Smith

Background:

Evidence-based physical education (EBPE) programs have increased physical activity (PA) by as much as 18%, yet widespread adoption has not occurred. Understanding school facilitators and barriers to PE should prove useful to EBPE dissemination efforts.

Methods:

Pairs of principals and PE teachers from 154 schools (75 Adopters and 79 Non-Adopters) from 34 states completed questionnaires. Differences between Adopter and Non-Adopter schools were tested using t tests or Wilcoxon Signed Rank Tests and chi-square analyses.

Results:

Principals and teachers reported distinct PE curriculum adoption decision making roles, but few viewed themselves as very involved in program evaluation. Teachers in Adopter schools were more satisfied with PE program outcomes and had greater involvement in teacher evaluation and program decision making. Compared with teachers, principals were generally more satisfied with their school’s PE program outcomes and did not share the same perceptions of PE barriers. However, principals also demonstrated a general lack of PE program familiarity.

Conclusions:

To facilitate EBPE adoption, dissemination efforts should target both principals and PE teachers. Increasing principal’s knowledge may be instrumental in addressing some teacher perceptions of barriers to PE. Strategic advocacy efforts, including targeting policies that require PE program evaluation, are needed.

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Christopher P. Connolly, Deborah L. Feltz and James M. Pivarnik

Pregnant and postpartum women have reported a number of barriers that prevent them from being sufficiently physically active. Overcoming these barriers is critical to ensure the health benefits of physical activity to both mother and fetus. The primary focus of this review centers on the potential impact social support may have in overcoming each of the primary barriers to physical activity experienced during pregnancy and the postpartum period. A reasonable body of research exists regarding the relationships between social support and these barriers; however, few investigations have specifically attempted to mitigate the effects of these barriers via social support interventions. Within this review, the enabling influence of social support as it pertains to pregnant and postpartum women's physical activity is discussed. Recommendations are suggested for the application of social support in future research investigations involving physical activity during pregnancy and postpartum.

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Kathleen Benjamin, Nancy Edwards, Jenny Ploeg and Frances Legault

Despite the benefits of physical activity, residents living in long-term care (LTC) are relatively sedentary. Designing successful physical activity and restorative care programs requires a good understanding of implementation barriers. A database search (2002–2013) yielded seven studies (nine articles) that met our inclusion criteria. We also reviewed 31 randomized controlled trials (RCTs) to determine if the authors explicitly discussed the barriers encountered while implementing their interventions. Eleven RCTs (13 articles) included a discussion of the barriers. Hence, a total of 18 studies (22 articles) were included in this review. Barriers occurred at resident (e.g., health status), environmental (e.g., lack of space for physical activity), and organizational (e.g., staffing and funding constraints) levels. These barriers intersect to adversely affect the physical activity of older people living in LTC. Future studies targeting physical activity interventions for residents living in LTC are needed to address these multiple levels of influence.

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Kiruthika Rathanaswami, Enrique Garcia Bengoechea and Paula Louise Bush

The aim of this study was to understand the physical activity (PA) experiences of South Asian women employees and their perceptions of new immigrant South Asian women in regards to barriers and facilitators to participation. This was examined using an interpretive description approach where similarities and differences between South Asian Women’s Centre employees and their perception of new South Asian immigrants were explored. Eight South Asian women employees (Mean age = 45.57 years) working at a South Asian Women’s Centre in Canada participated in this study. Five South Asian women employees participated in a focus group, three in an individual interview and one participant from the focus group took part in a follow-up interview to better understand their PA experiences. Barriers found included: family responsibilities, upbringing, feeling guilty, immediate living environment, clothing, cost, and location of activity. PA facilitators found included: help at home, cultural sports events, group support, female only programs, design of PA facilities, health and self-image benefits, providing PA for children at the same time as adults and collaborations. The main differences found between South Asian Women’s Centre employees and their clients concerned time, language and their partners. For this population of women, programs need to be affordable, close to home, female only and allow their own choice of clothing. The results suggest the importance for those working with South Asian women to take into consideration the many factors between the individual and the environment that may inhibit or facilitate PA behavior change in this population.

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Margaret L. Søvik, Torill Larsen, Hege Eikeland Tjomsland, Oddrun Samdal and Bente Wold

This study explores grassroots coaches’ (GCs’) perceptions of the content of a one-day coach education workshop, the programme’s applicability, their use of the content, and the perceived barriers to implementing the programme in their coaching practice. One hundred and thirteen GCs completed follow-up questionnaires, while 12 of them were also interviewed. Descriptive statistics and qualitative analyses were conducted. The quantitative results indicate that the GCs were mainly positive about the programme content and found it easy to apply and adapt to. However, few GCs seemed to apply the programme principles to a great extent. The qualitative results illustrate that the GCs reported barriers that seem to relate to programme characteristics, in particular a lack of follow-up; individual factors, such as a lack of time; and organizational factors, like the lack of a shared understanding of the programme with their co-coaches, and lack of support from club officials. Thus, the findings imply that there is a need for an extended focus on organisational factors, especially support by club officials, when implementing coach education content in youth sports. Future recommendations for implementation of coach education workshops for youth grassroots coaches have been suggested, where support for the coaches is a key issue.

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Corien Peeters, Hannah Marchand, Heather Tulloch, Ron J. Sigal, Gary S. Goldfield, Stasia Hadjiyannakis and Glen P. Kenny

Background:

Purpose was to examine experiences of obese youth aged 14 to 18 years during their participation in the Healthy Eating, Aerobic, and Resistance Exercise in Youth (HEARTY) randomized controlled exercise trial.

Methods:

A longitudinal qualitative approach was used to investigate youths’ experiences across time points in the trial: 3-weeks (run-in phase; n = 44, 52% males), 3-months (midpoint; n = 25), and 6-months (end of intervention; n = 24). Participants completed telephone interviews on perceived exercise facilitators, barriers, outcomes, and program preferences. Responses were subject to content analyses and are reported as frequencies.

Results:

Participants joined the trial initially to lose weight, but focused more on fitness over time. Exercise behavior was influenced by a sense of achieving results, and by family and peers (ie, supportive comments, transportation). At 6-months, the most commonly perceived changes were improved fitness (50%) and appearance (46%). Suggested changes to the HEARTY trial included initial guidance by a trainer, and more varied and group-based activity.

Conclusions:

Exercise facilitators, barriers and perceived changes in an exercise trial are reported. Access to a gym, initial direction by a trainer, variety, and group-based activities were reported as desired components of an exercise intervention. Findings also point to the importance of involving family and peer supports.

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Jon Welty Peachey and Adam Cohen

Research partnerships between scholars and sport for development and peace (SDP) organizations are common, but firsthand accounts of the challenges and barriers faced by scholars when forming and sustaining partnerships are rare. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine them, and to uncover strategies to overcome these challenges across different partnership contexts. Eight prominent SDP scholars were interviewed. Guided by collaboration theory and the partnership literature, findings revealed challenges included navigating the political and organizational landscape; securing commitments from organizations with limited resources; negotiating divergent goals, objectives, and understandings; and conducting long-term evaluations and research. Strategies to address these issues involved developing strategic partnerships, cultivating mutual understanding, building trust, starting small, finding the cause champion, and developing a track record of success. Key theoretical and practical implications are drawn forth, as well as intriguing future research directions.

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Jessie M. Wall, Janelle L. Kwee, Marvin J. McDonald and Richard A. Bradshaw

This study was the first to explore the treatment effects of observed and experiential integration (OEI) therapy for the salient psychological barriers to performance experienced by athletes. The hermeneutic single case efficacy design was used to explore the relationship between OEI therapy and athlete psychological functioning. The participant was a student-athlete who met the criteria for the performance dysfunction (multilevel classification system of Sport psychology) category, which indicates that subclinical issues were present. After five phases of data collection, a rich case record was compiled and referenced to develop skeptic and affirmative briefs and corresponding rebuttals by two research teams of three experts (OEI clinician, non-OEI clinician, and sport expert). Three independent judges adjudicated the cases and unanimously concluded that the client changed considerably to substantially and that OEI, the therapeutic relationship, and client expectancy were active variables in the change process.

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Sonja Kalinowski, Ines Wulff, Marita Kölzsch, Kirsten Kopke, Reinhold Kreutz and Dagmar Dräger

Purpose:

To explore different institutional barriers to and facilitators of physical activity (PA) in nursing homes.

Methods:

Cross-sectional survey of 40 German nursing homes and 217 nursing-home residents (NHRs; M ± SD age 80 ± 10.2 yr, 55% women, MMSE ≥20). Quantitative data were collected on the structural characteristics of nursing homes and the PA services available.

Results:

Forms of exercise available were not adequately communicated to residents. Overall participation was below 50%. Awareness was significantly higher in residents with informed relatives (p = .003). A broad range of forms of exercise was generally available (M ± SD 5 ± 2.22, range 0–10), but they were rarely tailored to NHRs’ needs and their effectiveness remains questionable.

Conclusion:

Multidimensional opportunities to promote PA in NHRs are identified.

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Heidi Stanish, Carol Curtin, Aviva Must, Sarah Phillips, Melissa Maslin and Linda Bandini

The authors compared physical activity enjoyment, perceived barriers, beliefs, and self-efficacy between adolescents with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and typically developing (TD) adolescents. A questionnaire was verbally administered to 35 adolescents with ASD and 60 TD adolescents. Compared with TD adolescents, fewer adolescents with ASD enjoyed team sports (65% vs. 95%, p < .001) and physical education (84% vs. 98%, p = .02). A greater proportion of adolescents with ASD perceived that physical activities were too hard to learn (16% vs. 0%, p < .01), and fewer believed that physical activity was a way to make friends (68% vs. 97%, p < .001). Fewer adolescents with ASD preferred to do physical activity in their free time (25% vs. 58%, p < .01). Most adolescents with ASD felt that physical activity is fun (84%), but the proportion was lower than in TD adolescents (98%, p = .03). Some perceptions about physical activity were similar between the 2 groups, but differences identified may inform program development.