Under the influence of the Sport for All movement the sport system in Switzerland has changed. Sport has become a leisure-time activity for an increasing number of people and has gained new meanings and forms. Many traditional limitations to participation appear to have been removed. By focusing on gender and age, this study, based on a survey of 1,103 employees, explores the extent to which particularisms and inequalities in contemporary recreational Swiss sport still exist. Although the involvement in sport by men and women, and involvement of different age groups, are quite similar in terms of frequency, their forms and meanings remain different. Using correspondence analysis we identify different sports fields and different sporting patterns by gender and age in terms of motives, places, and activities.
Markus Lamprecht and Hanspeter Stamm
Michael P. Sam
Taskforces, commissions of inquiry, and advisory committees are significant institutional features in the development of government sport policy. This study analyzes New Zealand’s Ministerial Taskforce on Sport, Fitness, and Leisure (2001) and uses empirical data gathered from observations of consultations, interviews with committee members, and available documents. It is argued that procedural, organizational, and political considerations significantly shaped and constrained the Taskforce’s findings and recommendations. Two fundamental contradictions are discussed. The first concerns the expectations for these bodies to develop both innovative and pragmatic recommendations in light of their ad hoc nature, their broad mandates, and short time lines. The second contradiction speaks to the paradoxical nature of taskforces in developing sport policy, noting in particular their dual roles as both advocates for the sport sector and investigators responsible for addressing problems and issues.
Frédéric Loyer and Jean François Loudcher
Kathleen Williams, Kathleen M. Haywood and Mary A. Painter
Both environmental and biological factors have been cited to explain large gender differences in throwing. Because differences are observed as early as three years, some researchers have suggested biological differences may be a primary factor (Nelson et al., 1986). To explore the contribution of these factors more carefully, three groups of children, 7-8 years, 9-10 years, and 11-12 years, were videotaped performing ten forceful overarm throws each with their dominant and nondominant hands. Resultant ball velocities were computed across all trials for each hand. Five trials for each arm, for each participant were categorized using Roberton’s (Roberton & Halverson, 1984) movement components for the overarm throw. Overall significant age differences were obtained for ball velocities for both dominant and nondominant arms, but gender differences were demonstrated only for the dominant arm. Ball velocity differences for the nondominant arm were not evident. Minimal differences in form occurred for the nondominant arm. When the nondominant arm exhibited coordination patterns and performances typical of an unpracticed performer, we suggest that nonbiological factors are important in explaining the large gender differences in throwing widely noted in the literature.
In 1962, the Board of Broadcast Governors (BBG), an arm of the Canadian federal government responsible for broadcasting, made the unprecedented move to force the national public broadcaster to televise the Grey Cup, the championship game of Canadian football, ostensibly because it was in the
Ellen O’Reilly, Sandy Romanow, Mamie Rutledge, Jamie Covey, James Mandigo and Ellen O’Reilly
How do adolescent girls self-evaluate their ability to throw with force? Does this evaluation alter if the characteristics of their participating group vary by such factors as gender or perceived abili ty? What importance do females attach to this skill? How does self assessment concerning the ability to throw with force affect identity formation in adolescent girls? These questions guided our study on adolescent girls’ perceptions of the importance of being able to throw overhand with force. The data for this study were collected during a series of health and activity sessions available to girls from a diversity of cultures and ethnic groups attending middle-class junior and senior high schools located in a large western Canadian city. Self-evaluation questionnaires were completed by 195 adoles cent female participants as part of an activity session focused on overhand throwing. Statistical analysis of the numbered preference responses, and qualitative assessment of additional written comments enabled the research team to document the contemporary female experience of throwing, with particular consideration given to technique, attitudes, and the personal meaning adolescent girls attribute to the development of a fundamental motor skill.
Linda K. Bunker and Frances S. Scruby
Nancy Langhorne Astor, the first woman member of English Parliament, used sports as an asset in promoting worthy political causes and as a force in advocating women’s health issues. She championed childhood education and through her sponsorship of new facilities and sporting organizations made sports a much more acceptable pursuit for women of her era. Many strident criticisms of her behavior can be dismissed in light of her era’s gender bias against which she was a warrior her entire life. This retrospective study of her life leads to new interpretations of her contributions to her 20th Century world.
Marie Hardin, Stacie Shain and Kelly Shultz-Poniatowski
In the first part of a longitudinal study to explore the factors that impact career longevity of women in sports journalism, women who have worked in the field for less than two years were interviewed about barriers and opportunities in regard to their career success. Three general themes emerged during the interviews: (a) being a woman is not a barrier but is instead an (unfair) advantage; (b) the world of sports is a man’s world; and (c) family responsibilities will likely change, or perhaps end, their careers. The outlook of participants is grounded in the belief that gender roles, which will force these women from their careers, are natural. These interviews suggest that it no longer takes locker-room harassment to turn women away from practicing sports journalism; it simply takes the prospect of having a family.
The Oglala Lakota basketball teams of Pine Ridge Indian Reservation are one of the most competitive programs in the state of South Dakota. They are, however, competing for state honors in one of the most racist climates in the country. My ethnographic study looks at how the Lakota navigate these perilous waters. Using Turner’s view of performance; and Scott’s theories of cultural resistance, I have characterized Lakota basketball as ‘engaged acrimony.’ Teams representing subaltern communities may use sport to carve out spheres of resistance that force those socially more power communities to grudgingly acknowledge the momentary reversal of the social order. Additionally, in these symbolic victories the Lakota craft narratives of victory that fuel cultural pride and further their resolve to withstand the racist climate they live in.
New writing practices in qualitative research include evocative writing—a research practice through which we can investigate how we construct the world, ourselves, and others, and how standard objectifying practices of social science unnecessarily limit us and social science. Evocative representations do not take writing for granted but offer multiple ways of thinking about a topic, reaching diverse audiences, and nurturing the writer. They also offer an opportunity for rethinking criteria used to judge research and reconsidering institutional practices and their effects on community. Language is a constitutive force, creating a particular view of reality and the Self. No textual staging is ever innocent (including this one). Styles of writing are neither fixed nor neutral but reflect the historically shifting domination of particular schools or paradigms. Social scientific writing, like all other forms of writing, is a sociohistorical construction, and, therefore, mutable.