The number of older athletes is growing with the aging of populations across the developed world. This article reviews studies from a variety of disciplines that focus specifically on the motives and experiences of older adults competing in physically demanding sports at events such as masters and veterans competitions in Australia or the Senior Olympics in North America. It is shown that the majority of research into this phenomenon has taken a quantitative approach or failed to consider older athletes’ experiences in the context of broader sociocultural discourses. Therefore, using the author’s research into the experiences of older Australian masters athletes as a catalyst, the need for and strength of sociological qualitative research in this area is discussed. The use of qualitative methods, such as in-depth interviews and observations, and interpretive analysis provided alternative ways of making sense of older adults and their relationship with competitive sport to what is typically found in the sport and aging literature.
Joshua I. Newman
NASSS academic community in the last two decades, I thought it might be a useful exercise to take this critique seriously and envisage where such a relational, stubbornly realist orientation might take the sociology of sport. Before delving deeper, I should note that Latour is not alone in his
, and the opportunities available to, sociology (of sport) as an academic (sub-)discipline. SRC is indicative of both the expanding imperative of health ( Lupton, 1995 ) and the increasing prominence of medicine and health within sports science ( Malcolm, 2014 ). It resonates with the “crisis” which has
George H. Sage
This paper examines the linkages between physical education, sociology, and sociology of sport in North America. Physical education and sociology in North America have had numerous mutual ties since the beginnings of both fields. In the first section of the paper, I describe the rise of sociology and physical education in North America, emphasizing the linkages that initially existed between physical education and sociology, and then the separation that transpired between the disciplines. The second section examines the connections between social theory and physical education before the sociology of sport was formally developed. The final section details the rise of sociology of sport, with the main focus on the role of physical educators (a.k.a. sociocultural kinesiologists, sport studies scholars, human kinetics scholars) in the development of sociology of sport. This section concludes with a discussion of the linkages of social theory, critical pedagogy in physical education, and sport sociology in physical education.
Maureen M. Smith
As women age, society assigns stereotypes that suggest that older women are no longer capable of being competent athletes. In considering the experiences of older women in sport from a sociological perspective, this article provides a short summary of works examining older women in masters sport settings, as well as three brief case studies of older women engaged in sport and movement. As American women age, more of them will have experienced organized high school sport (after the passage of Title IX), suggesting that the experiences of older women in sport will take on new dimensions and meanings worthy of exploration.
This essay focuses on some of the main challenges that currently face the sociology of sport, the challenge from the natural sciences, the challenge from mainstream sociology and the challenge which we have set ourselves and which, requires new intellectual innovations of the type discussed in the final sections of this essay. It is vital that the sociology of sport be defended against the tyranny of the natural sciences. This project, however, must not be disaggregated from the requirements to fight for greater acceptance from mainstream sociology and to address our own shortcomings by extending the sociology of sport in potentially exciting ways. In this respect, both memory and space present interesting possibilities. They are highlighted in this essay, from among numerous possible alternatives, for largely personal reasons. The general point, however, is that if we are to defend the sociology of sport successfully, we need to be more creative, both methodologically and theoretically.
K. Andrew R. Richards, Colin G. Pennington and Oleg A. Sinelnikov
. doi:10.1123/jtpe.10.3.286 10.1123/jtpe.10.3.286 Billingham , M. ( 2007 ). Sociological perspectives . In B. Stretch & M. Whitehouse (Eds.), Health and social care (pp. 301 – 334 ). Oxford, UK : Heinemann . * Blankenship , B.T. , & Coleman , M.M. ( 2009 ). An examination of “wash
Mark Norman, Katelyn Esmonde and Courtney Szto
The past 15 years have seen the acceleration of two trends of great interest in the sociology of sport: the rapid growth and adoption of digital (sport) media ( Hutchins & Rowe, 2012 ) and, since Burawoy’s ( 2004 , 2005 ) influential calls for public sociology, a growing interest in public
meeting the demands of 21st century education. Using an applied research design, this study explored how the manipulation of physical space and various typologies of active learning strategies were perceived by students in two classes that teach sport sociology content. Literature Review Building from
Alan G. Ingham and Peter Donnelly
As we pass the 30th anniversary of a recognized sociology of sport in North America, it is appropriate to develop a current sociological analysis of the subdiscipline. In the first part we examine the origins of the field and the development of the Wisconsin socialization paradigm and the social problems perspective. In the second part we explore the critical shift in the field, emerging from an engagement with C. Wright Mills, and the development of a political economy perspective. In the third part we review the turn to Antonio Gramsci and cultural studies, focusing particularly on the themes of gender and the body. We conclude by considering whether, given the current eclecticism, sociology of sport is still a legitimate description of our field.