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Permanent link (DOI): https://doi.org/10.7939/R3295G

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Sport Commitment in High School Swimming Open Access

Descriptions

Other title
Subject/Keyword
high school
sport commitment
physical activity
swimming
Type of item
Thesis
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Larson, Heather K
Supervisor and department
Reade, Ian (Physical Education and Recreation)
Examining committee member and department
Mummery, Kerry (Physical Education and Recreation)
Berry, Tanya (Physical Education and Recreation)
Department
Physical Education and Recreation
Specialization

Date accepted
2014-09-23T13:34:23Z
Graduation date
2014-11
Degree
Master of Arts
Degree level
Master's
Abstract
Introduction: High school swimming in Alberta is characterized by an emphasis on participation and inclusion regardless of ability level or competitive aspirations. For many students, this is their first meaningful exposure to the sport. The purpose of this study was to explore the potential of high school swimming programs as an avenue for increasing physical activity and sport commitment in less active adolescents. The following four areas were explored: the impact of high school swimming on participants’ physical activity levels, the relationship between sport commitment and physical activity, the determinants of sport commitment, and intentions for continued participation in swimming outside of high school. Methods: Forty-six participants were recruited from a high school swim team that was chosen for its stability, longevity, and success in attracting and retaining large numbers of swimmers. Participants’ physical activity levels were measured pre-season, mid-season, and post-season, using the Physical Activity Questionnaire for Adolescents (Kowalski, Crocker, and Kowalski, 1997). Mid-season, participants also completed a questionnaire measuring seven constructs from Scanlan, Carpenter, Schmidt, Simons, and Keeler’s (1993) Sport Commitment Model. Eight participants were also interviewed using the Scanlan Collaborative Interview Method (Scanlan, Russell, Wilson, & Scanlan, 2003). Results: Participants who were less active pre-season had significantly higher physical activity post-season. However, the relationship between sport commitment and mid-season or post-season physical activity was only significant for participants in Grade 12. Several constructs from the Sport Commitment Model were found to be important sources of commitment for these participants. Sport Enjoyment had the strongest positive relationship with commitment, followed by Valuable Opportunities and Personal Investments. Other Priorities had a significant negative relationship with commitment. After analysing interview data, Social Support, Desire to Excel, and Team Tradition were all determined to be important sources of strengthened commitment. The interview results also suggested that participants who joined the team without having any prior competitive swimming experience developed an appreciation for the sport and a desire to continue swimming outside of high school. Conclusions: High school swimming may have a positive impact on the physical activity levels of less active adolescents, and it certainly has potential for facilitating a long-lasting commitment to the sport of swimming. Other swim programs hoping to increase sport commitment in adolescents should recognize the importance of competent, caring coaches, encourage positive social interactions, provide opportunities for monetary investment, and foster team tradition.
Language
English
DOI
doi:10.7939/R3295G
Rights
Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
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File title: Heather Kay Larson
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Page count: 167
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