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While previous research highlights the important benefits that sport participation can have for youth development, limited research has examined the sport experiences of athletes with disabilities (Martin, 2006). The purpose of this study was to describe the sport experiences of athletes with physical disabilities in a model swim program that has been widely recognized for the development of positive values in athletes. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with eight athletes with a physical disability. Participants were both male (n = 3) and female (n = 5), between 9 - 19 years of age, and averaged 5.9 years of swimming experience. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and were subjected to a content analysis procedure in which raw meaning units were grouped into salient themes (Coté, Salmela, Baria, & Russell, 1993; Tesch, 1990). Athletes’ responses regarding the outcomes derived from this program revealed four themes: 1) Redefined capabilities, 2) affirmed sense of self, 3) strengthened social connection, and 4) enhanced acceptance. Social and contextual processes facilitating the development of these outcomes are also discussed. Practical implications for programmers, coaches, and athletes are presented along with recommendations for future sport research.
was to understand what representations Italian adolescents have about the
dialogue and the relationship with their parents and with the peer group, as
well as to evaluate any differences. We interviewed 400 Italian adolescents,
200 males and 200 females, aged between 14 and 19 years. The instruments used
were an ad hoc questionnaire and a free story. The results show significant
differences in the communicative/relational support by parents and by the peer
group, especially in relation to the confidences of their personal problems,
the choice autonomy and the behaviors that encourage independence.