Despite the health benefits derived from regular participation in moderate physical activity, the majority of adult lesbians are not physically active. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between moderate physical activity and the perceived presence and extent of limitation of 30 general and 10 lesbian-specific barriers. The participants were 516 self-identified adult lesbians who completed a web-based survey. Compared to physically active participants, participants who were insufficiently active reported more general barriers and a significantly higher extent of limitation of general and lesbian-specific barriers overall. Insufficiently active participants also differed in the perceived presence of one of the five most frequently experienced barriers and in the extent of limitation of three of those five barriers. The study’s findings suggest that the impact of barriers may be alleviated through the use of appropriately tailored strategies to help lesbians cope with them. Future research should further examine whether lesbians experience additional population-specific barriers.
Danielle R. Brittain, Nancy C. Gyurcsik and Mary McElroy
Jennifer L. Gay, Eva V. Monsma, Alan L. Smith, J.D. DeFreese and Toni Torres-McGehee
Growth and maturation may impact adolescent behavior and development of psychological disorders. Currently age at menarche is used as the primary marker of maturation, even though it occurs later than other indicators of growth such as peak height velocity (PHV). Maturity offset predicting age at PHV has not been validated in diverse samples. Anthropometric measures and self-reported age at menarche were obtained for 212 female athletes ages 11 to 16 years (M = 13.25). Shared variance between menarcheal age and estimated age at PHV (APHV) was small (R 2 = 5.3%). Discriminant validity was established by classifying participants as pre- or post-PHV or menarche (X2 = 32.62, P < .0001). The Pearson’s correlation between chronological age and age at PHV (r = .69) was stronger than with age at menarche (r = .26). Making informed decisions about accounting for growth and maturation using estimated age at PHV are offered.
Cassandra Wells and Simon C. Darnell
The sex testing of South African runner Caster Semenya in 2009 was widely discussed in media, but the most serious and significant sites of debate may have been within the cultures and institutions of track & field itself. In this article, we report findings from an analysis of an online track & field community—TrackNet Listserv—through which the Semenya case, and the politics and ethics of sex testing, were discussed. The results suggest that listserv members recognized the contestability of sex testing policies and identified with feminist struggles, but nevertheless largely argued for sex testing’s necessity in light of understandings of the biologically normative female body and the importance of maintaining fairness in and through sex-segregated sport. The implications for the sport of track & field and for sporting feminisms are discussed.
Donald Chu and David Griffey
The contact theory of racial integration is examined in this survey of the behaviors and attitudes of secondary school students and student-athletes. Self-report questionnaires were completed by 1,082 subjects in the urban upstate New York area. Subjects were evaluated on two behavioral (race of students talked to, race of students phoned) and three attitudinal (like more friends of other races, choose interracial school, or races smarter than others) dependent variables. Dependent measures were evaluated relative to their correlations with a number of independent variables (athlete/nonathlete, individual or cooperative sport played, sport experience, won-lost record, exposure to minorities, sex, social status). Results of the study argue for consideration of the contact theory’s applicability to the sport situation.
This article explores the intersection of representation, management, and race in the National Basketball Association (NBA) through a larger question on the relationship between corporate strategies for managing racialized subjects and popular representations of race. The NBA “brand”is situated in terms of recent developments in corporate and popular culture and then analyzed as an example of diversity management. Relying on original interviews with NBA corporate employees, as well as business and marketing industry reporting, the article analyzes the NBA as simultaneously an organization and a brand. As such, the NBA helps to “articulate” the corporate with the popular, largely through an implied racial project that manages race relations by continuing to equate corporate interests with Whiteness. The analysis contributes to ongoing discussions about the role of sports in perpetuating social disparities based on race at a time when “colorblindness” remains the paradigm of White approaches to race.
Neal Christopherson, Michelle Janning and Eileen Diaz McConnell
The 1999 Women’s World Cup Soccer Championship serves as a particularly good site for examining both the social construction of gender and the structure of contradiction surrounding women’s role in sport and society. We conducted a content analysis of 576 American newspaper articles reporting on the 1999 Women’s World Cup Soccer Championship. Contradictory messages surrounding women and sports were present, as past research has suggested. An analysis of more qualitative aspects of our data reveals the structure of these contradictions and provides substantial depth to this analysis. We discuss how the media actively promoted or constructed certain gender ideologies and how these gender ideologies contributed to the popularity of the event.
C. Thøgersen-Ntoumani, K. Biscomb, A. M. Lane, H. J. Lane and H. Jarrett
Using Self-Determination Theory (SDT; Deci & Ryan, 1985) as an overarching theoretical framework, the main purpose of the present study was to examine the relationship between women’s motives to exercise and their reported exercise behavior. Three hundred and thirty women (Age range = 20-61+) took part in the study. Participants were categorized into a ‘’no-exercise’ group, a ‘some exercise’ group (less than 2.5 hours of exercise per week) or a ‘recommended amount of exercise’ group (minimum 2.5 hours of exercise per week). Controlling for the influence of age, MANCOVA analyses showed that the exercise groups differed significantly on most self-determined and controlling exercise motives. The results partly support propositions of SDT, and suggest that women may internalize, exercise behavior as they become more physically active, however controlling motives are still pertinent. Exercise leaders and promotion specialists should look into ways of facilitating the internalization process in female exercise participants.
Joy Griffin and Mary B. Harris
In this study, two groups of sport psychologists (N = 107) were surveyed six years apart to (a) identify sources of stress and rate the intensity of selected stressors, (b) investigate gender and other demographic variables associated with stress, and (c) determine if level of stress had changed over time. Self-reported stressors included time demands, interpersonal interactions, role conflict, limited resources, credibility, marketing/business issues, lack of support, professional isolation, politics, research, teaching loads, ethical issues, job security, and family demands. Time demands and institutional policies were rated as most stressful. Both gender and tenure status were related to stress, but age, years of experience, and number of hours worked per day did not correlate with intensity of stress. Based upon respondents’ beliefs and a comparison of the two samples we concluded that stress has increased over time.
Daniel S. Putler and Richard A. Wolfe
Considerable controversy exists concerning university athletics. Depending upon one’s perspective, athletic programs are seen as having important positive, or negative, effects on universities. The objective of the research reported here is to determine whether perceptions of intercollegiate athletic programs differ as a function of issues such as winning, profits, ethics, and the education of athletes. Our analyses indicate that: (a) ethics and winning, and education and revenue, tend to be competing athletic program priorities; (b) individuals cluster in four groups that emphasize athletic program revenue, winning, education, and ethics; and (c) the extent to which cluster membership is related to constituency group (e.g., alumni, students, faculty) membership depends on the constituency group being considered. The paper concludes with a discussion of the implications of our findings for both theory and practice.
Laura Hills and Eileen Kennedy
This analysis of the televising of the 2005 Wimbledon Tennis Championships in the United Kingdom and United States explores how the space of Wimbledon is communicated to different national cultures. The theoretical framing draws on the concepts of deterritorialization developed in Tomlinson’s (1999) work and space invaders as understood by Puwar (2004). A discourse analysis of newspaper reports and television broadcasts demonstrates ways in which the mediation of Wimbledon can be understood as subject to deterritorialization, which opens up the space of Wimbledon to bodies simultaneously marked as insiders and outsiders, revealing tensions around the visibility and invisibility of bodies. We conclude by pointing to the potential of these tensions for disrupting the power dynamics of sport.