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Phenomenology and Adapted Physical Activity: Philosophy and Professional Practice

Øyvind F. Standal

Through the increased use of qualitative research methods, the term phenomenology has become a quite familiar notion for researchers in adapted physical activity (APA). In contrast to this increasing interest in phenomenology as methodology, relatively little work has focused on phenomenology as philosophy or as an approach to professional practice. Therefore, the purpose of this article is to examine the relevance of phenomenology as philosophy and as pedagogy to the field of APA. First, phenomenology as philosophy is introduced through three key notions, namely the first-person perspective, embodiment, and life-world. The relevance of these terms to APA is then outlined. Second, the concept of phenomenological pedagogy is introduced, and its application and potential for APA are discussed. In conclusion, it is argued that phenomenology can help theorize ways of understanding human difference in movement contexts and form a basis of action-oriented research aiming at developing professional practice.

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Coaches’ Perceptions of Mental Toughness in Adolescent Athletes: A Phenomenological Exploration

Johannes Raabe, E. Earlynn Lauer, and Matthew P. Bejar

Pollio et al., 1997 ; Thomas & Pollio, 2002 ) was adopted for the study. Phenomenology has previously been employed in sport psychology to investigate other phenomena, such as competition ( Jensen et al., 2013 ), coping ( Nicholls et al., 2005 ), exercise dependency ( Fahlberg et al., 1992 ), and

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A Phenomenological Study: Experiencing the Unexpected Death of a Teammate

Duncan Simpson and Lauren P. Elberty

suddenly lost their teammates. A research approach that has the potential to capture the experience of an unexpected death in sport is existential phenomenology which, is concerned with the human existence and a way of measuring this experience ( Pollio, Henley, & Thompson, 1997 ). Using an existential

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Female Athletes’ Experiences of Positive Growth Following Deselection in Sport

Kacey C. Neely, John G.H. Dunn, Tara-Leigh F. McHugh, and Nicholas L. Holt

individuals encounter ( Tedeschi & Calhoun, 2004 ). Interpretative phenomenological analysis research is underpinned by three main concepts: phenomenology, hermeneutics, and ideography ( Smith et al., 2009 ). Phenomenology is concerned with first-person accounts of lived experience. These were captured via

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Existential Phenomenology: Emphasizing the Experience of the Athlete in Sport Psychology Research

Gregory A. Dale

Qualitative research in sport psychology is slowly becoming more of an accepted form of inquiry, and most of this research is conducted using various interview methods. In this paper, information is provided on a paradigm that has been given little consideration in sport psychology literature. This paradigm is termed existential phenomenology, and within this paradigm a chief mode of inquiry is the phenomenological interview. With its open-ended format and similarities to the athlete-sport psychology consultant interaction in a performance enhancement intervention, it is a method that appears to offer valuable information about the participant’s experience that might otherwise go unnoticied. The basic views of existential phenomenology, including its philosophical foundations as well as instructions for conducting a phenomenological interview study, are provided. Specific discussion of the potential significance of this type of research for the field of sport psychology is offered.

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Yes We Can! A Phenomenological Study of a Sports Camp for Young People With Cerebral Palsy

Kenneth Aggerholm and Kristian Møller Moltke Martiny

To understand the value of a winter sports camp, it is important to consider the experiences of the participants. Phenomenology provides a solid theoretical and methodological framework for investigating experience. It can contribute with an approach to studies and interventions within adapted

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“My Child May Be Ready, but I Am Not”: Parents’ Experiences of Their Children’s Transition to Inclusive Fitness Settings

Bobbi-Jo Atchison and Donna L. Goodwin

research approach for the study ( Brewer et al., 2008 , p. 7). Interpretative phenomenological analysis has its theoretical roots in phenomenology, idiography, and hermeneutics ( Smith et al., 2009 ). To illustrate research coherence and avoid “method slurring,” the tenets of IPA are described ( Holloway

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“Being” an Older Adult Skier: The Phenomenology of Masters Alpine Ski Racers

Carly Litchfield, Denise M. Connelly, Melissa E. Hay, and Elizabeth Anne Kinsella

by the work of van Manen ( 1990 ), combining descriptive and hermeneutic phenomenology and recognizing the interpretations of the observer to enhance understandings of the meaning of life experiences through cognitive and emotional means ( Dowling, 2007 ; vanManen, 1997 ). Van Manen’s interest in

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The MVP Model: From Phenomenology to Practice

Jens Omli

This article is an introduction to the MVP model, which focuses on the experience of competitive sport performance from a phenomenological stance, with particular emphasis on the influence of perceived success and failure. One premise of the MVP model is that sport performance is partially determined by the athlete’s interpretation of prior performances, which influences the trajectory and intensity of his or her phenomenological state. A second premise is that when the experiences described by athletes are analyzed together as a “layered picture,” these experiences tend to follow a pattern summarized by a sequence of six “competitive positions,” which can be arranged around a semicircumplex called the “Performance Dial.” The Performance Dial is an educational tool that can be used in consultations to facilitate communication between practitioners and athletes. The MVP model also serves as a framework within which sport psychology research findings can be understood in relation to the experience of sport performance, thereby increasing the applicability of sport performance research for practitioners.

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Forging Ahead: An Examination of the Experiences and Coping Mechanisms of Channel Swimmers

Jennifer M. Schumacher, Andrea J. Becker, and Lenny D. Wiersma

Phenomenological interview methods were used to examine the experiences of thirteen channel swimmers (nine males and four females) with an average age of 41.08 years (SD = 10.05). All participants successfully completed an official channel crossing of 20 or more miles within the past 2 years. Analyses of the interview transcripts yielded 2,028 meaning units that were grouped into subthemes, themes, and major dimensions (e.g., Patton, 2002). The final thematic structure consisted of three major dimensions that chronicled the swimmers’ experiences including: before my channel swim, during my channel swim, and after my channel swim. This manuscript specifically focuses on the themes from within the dimension of during my channel swim, which includes the swimmers’ environmental, physical, social, and psychological experiences during the swim itself as well as the coping mechanisms that they used to succeed.