Recent Submissions

  • Effects of a Tailored Social Marketing Campaign Targeting Smoking Policy Compliance on Smoking-Related Behaviour on Campus

    Turnbull, Haley A; Applied Health Sciences Program
    Introduction. Smoking represents a significant risk to Canadians. Young people in Canada have historically had the highest smoking prevalence of any other age group. Implementing smoking policies can be an effective strategy for post-secondary campuses to interrupt smoking trajectories and reduce the risk of campus citizens being exposed to second- hand smoke, however compliance can be a barrier to achieving these outcomes. This study examined the effects of a social marketing campaign on policy-non-compliance on a post- secondary campus in Ontario, Canada. Methods. The 3-week campaign was implemented by students and focused on policy- compliance-related objectives. Six smoking sites were observed twice a day for one week before the campaign, and one week after the campaign was completed. 4 sites were designated smoking areas, as defined by the smoking policy at the institution. 2 sites were undesignated “hot-spots” where smoking was frequently observed to occur. A butt litter audit was completed before and after the campaign to determine if butt litter decreased after the campaign. Results. At designated smoking sites, using the strict policy definition of the designated smoking sites, the proportion of observed behaviour that was non-compliant decreased in designated smoking areas (-0.079, 95% CI = 0.143, -0.0151, p < .05). Noncompliant behaviours also significantly decreased after the campaign using a more lenient measure of compliance (-0.102, 95% CI = -0.203, -0.001, p < .05). At undesignated hot spots, the average number of people using the areas to smoke decreased at both sites after the campaign. The proportion of all cigarettes which were disposed of correctly in receptacles was 75.5% before the campaign and 77.4% after the campaign. It is unclear if second-hand smoke exposure was reduced for non- smoking pedestrians despite the overall reduction in non-compliant behaviours. Conclusions. Implementing a student-led, social marketing campaign focussed on improving compliance was an effective strategy to improve compliance with smoking policy.
  • Exploring Parental Experiences and Meaning of Involvement within Youth Sport: An Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis

    Maxwell, Keetyn; Applied Health Sciences Program
    By applying an interpretative phenomenological analysis approach, the purpose of the study was to explore the lived experience of parental involvement in youth sport and the meaning the involvement holds. Specifically, I wanted to examine how role identity theory can provide deeper understanding to how parents experience and provide meaning to their involvement in their children’s sport. A key aspect to the study is that as the researcher, I was attempting to understand the experiences of the participant’s meaning-making. Master themes that capture the overall phenomenon were constructed that were present across the majority of participants while still allowing for each participant’s unique experience to be understood. The overarching themes interpreted from the data include: Desiring Involvement, Onus on Parental Roles within Involvement, Commitment, and Constructing Meaning-making of the Experience. These findings highlight the ways in which role identity salience defines the experience and the meaning involvement holds to a parent. This study provided deeper theoretical understanding of the experience of being a parent involved in youth sport, as well as highlighted the usefulness of conducting research in this field with an interpretative phenomenological analysis approach to explore a complex and diverse topic.
  • The Effects of the Mad Dog Diet on Bowel Function, Body Composition, Neuropathic Pain, and Depression in a Spinal Cord Injury and Multiple Sclerosis Population

    Sullivan, Timothy; Applied Health Sciences Program
    Inflammation has been shown to negatively influence bowel function, body composition, neuropathic pain, and depression within the spinal cord injury (SCI) and multiple sclerosis (MS) populations. Four individuals with varying levels of SCI’s (C5-T1/AIS A-D/3 male 1 female) and two individuals with varying diagnoses of MS (SPMS & RRMS, female) were recruited for the study. Bowel function was assessed via The Bowel Management subset of the Spinal Cord Injury Quality of Life (SCI-QOL) and Neurological Bowel Dysfunction (NBD) questionnaires, body composition was assessed via dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) scans, neuropathic pain was assessed via the neuropathic pain questionnaire, and depression was measured via the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D) questionnaire. This study investigated the effects of 6-weeks of the Mad Dog diet, which aimed to reduce inflammation, and improve the aforementioned ailments. The 6-week Mad Dog diet was associated with a significant reduction in total body mass (p=0.006), lean mass (p=0.046) and fat mass (p=0.038). Despite the significant reduction in fat mass, there were no significant changes in subcutaneous fat mass (p=0.091), or visceral mass (p=0.33), which suggests that the study was underpowered and could not distinguish the relative contribution of either fat source to the losses in total fat mass. Likewise, there were no significant changes in bowel function as determined by SCI-QOL scores (p=0.33), or NBD scores (p=0.29), and no significant changes in any domain of neuropathic pain (sensory, p=0.55; affective, p=0.15; sensitivity, p=0.12), or depression (CES-D scores, p=0.34). These findings demonstrate that 6 weeks of the Mad Dog diet may be beneficial for body composition in the SCI and MS populations. Findings from this research provide the basis for a larger study that can more fully assess the outcomes from this study along with changes in biological measures of inflammation.
  • From their eyes: Nursing student experiences using repeated reflection from the pediatric patient's perspective

    Van der Wal, Melissa; Applied Health Sciences Program
    Simulation-based learning (SBL) has been a core course component in nursing curricula for decades. The growing use of SBL has led to increasingly lifelike simulations and continued development to maximize learning opportunities. Reflection and debriefing are key components of SBL to improve learning outcomes and clinical skills. Reflection is often described as a process; however, nursing students rarely have the opportunity to participate in the same simulation or clinical experience twice to completely engage in the reflective process. Reflection from the patient’s perspective is a new concept to simulation, first done by Taplay (2020) using the Reflective Practice from the Patient’s Perspective (RPPP) tool. In this study, we applied the RPPP 3.0 tool to a pediatric nursing simulation, where the simulated child wore spyglasses to record visual and audio data of the simulation (Taplay, 2020). Participants watched their simulations from the patient’s perspective and partook in an interview guided by the RPPP 3.0 tool (Taplay, 2020). Then, participants returned within 2-9 days to repeat the same simulation and reflection. Participants found value and meaning in the repeated reflection. Themes of reactions, communication, appraisal of performance, and the difference were found. Reflecting from the pediatric patient’s perspective allowed participants to gain insight into how their actions and communication were perceived. Repeating reflection encouraged participants to partake in self-directed preparation and allowed them to gain confidence, implement change, and improve their practice.
  • Fan Responses to Virtual Reality Sport Sponsorship Activations: The Influence of Presence on Emotion and Attitude Formation

    Schlieman, Troy; Applied Health Sciences Program
    Considering the massive financial investment into sport sponsorship and the growth of the industry, it is important for managers to understand the strategic implications of their partnership decisions. This is even more essential in the current marketing landscape where advertising clutter and limited attention spans are rampant. Consequentially, experiential marketing has emerged to combat these challenges and provide consumers with unique and memorable experiences. Further, virtual reality (VR) has surfaced as a possible experiential marketing tool in that it has the capabilities of simulating one’s presence in a virtual environment: potentially creating those unique and memorable experiences. With sponsorship activation transitioning into an online environment further accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, the capabilities of virtual reality make it an attractive option to sport marketers. Presently, this technology is being applied without a clear purpose due to the newness of the platform and the lack of research and understanding regarding its true value. Thus, it is critical to examine how media modes, such as VR, may affect the impact of sponsorship messaging. In exploring sponsorship activation specifically, this study aimed to examine the use of 360-degree video and virtual reality as activation components, and if traditional non-immersive (phone, tablet, laptop, or desktop) and immersive (virtual reality) technologies differ in terms of their influence on important sponsor outcomes such as eliciting emotions and influencing attitudes. This study employed a survey design to compare responses between two groups. The first group experienced a 360-degree sport sponsorship activation video using non-immersive media while the second group experienced the same video in VR. A total of 114 responses were collected (57 in each group). Responses were then analyzed using two-way independent sample t-tests to find any statistically significant differences. Results showed that non-immersive respondents reported higher ratings of arousal compared to immersive respondents. Notably, there was a clear desire for 360-degree activation content from all users regardless of media mode. This study serves as a preliminary basis of valuation for virtual reality technology as it applies to sponsorship activation.
  • Understanding Interorganizational Relationships and Organizational Capacity in a Youth Baseball Network

    Willis, Jackson; Applied Health Sciences Program
    Within the Canadian sport system there has been a noted decline in team sport participation among youth athletes. Factors that have contributed to this decline include increased competition amongst organizations, a larger number of sport options and sport specialization. Baseball in particular is a sport that has seen declining participation rates in recent years. Within the sport management literature two key concepts have emerged as key areas of interest for youth sport organizations in their operations; interorganizational relationships and organizational capacity. Interorganizational relationship (IOR) development has been identified as an effective strategy for strengthening the capacity of youth sport organizations (Misener & Doherty, 2013). Organizational capacity has been related to the ability of organizations to draw on a variety of resources to help achieve desired outcomes (Hall et al., 2003), while there is also evidence to support the connection between greater organizational capacity and increased success in achieving these outcomes (Jones et al., 2017). Thus, the purpose of this research study was to examine the relationship between interorganizational relationships and organizational capacity within a youth baseball network in the Niagara Region of Ontario, Canada. Data were collected from representatives of ten youth baseball organizations through a survey instrument via telephone interview format. Data were analyzed using a social network analysis methodology including the use of the UCINET 6.0 software program and NetDraw function that allowed for the calculation of density and centrality measures along with visual representations of the network. QAP Multiple Regression analysis was also conducted and showed that IORs and sector were both found to be statistically significant in their ability to predict organizational capacity ties within this network. Overall, the results of this study allowed for conclusions to be drawn related to network structure, state of organizational capacity, and the relationship between IORs and organizational capacity in this youth baseball network.
  • An Exploratory Study of the Design of Major Junior Hockey Regional Leagues, from the Perspective of Member Team Employees

    Moussa, Jordyn A; Applied Health Sciences Program
    Major Junior Hockey (MJH) is a unique part of the Canadian hockey system. Beginning in the 1960s, regional leagues began to form across Canada, culminating with the creation of the Canadian Hockey League (CHL) in 1974. The CHL is currently the governing body of MJH in Canada which is the most elite level of junior hockey in Canada. MJH regional leagues have been regarded as the best possible route to the National Hockey League (NHL) for junior-aged male hockey players, despite alternative paths existing in the United States and Europe. While much of the hockey literature in the past decade includes a broad scope of scholarly research, Canadian MJH remains a sub-context of that conversation. To date, the operations of MJH regional leagues have yet to be explored. Thus, the purpose of this exploratory study is to examine how Canadian MJH regional league offices are currently designed. Drawing upon organizational design literature both in and out of sport contexts, the research seeks to understand the design of the MJH regional leagues through specific principles. To explore this study, nine semi-structured interviews with Canadian MJH regional league member team employees were conducted. The findings indicated there exists a hybrid of two interconnected focuses within the MJH regional leagues’ organizational design: player development and revenue generation. The member team employee perceptions of the MJH regional leagues’ design are further discussed relating to previous organizational design literature, and historical developments of Canadian MJH. Several contributions to research and practice, and opportunities for future research are outlined to continue exploring the MJH system in Canada.
  • Requisite Characteristics of a Mentor to Establish Positive Relationships in a Type One Diabetes Intervention from the Mentee’s Perspective

    Sjaarda, Vanessa; Applied Health Sciences Program
    Background: Diabetes has reached global epidemic proportions. Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) typically strikes in childhood and is now becoming more prevalent in young adults. Evidence suggests that proactive harnessing of the positive attributes of a peer-to-peer mentor-mentee relationship could help mediate and decrease prevalence, assist with better glycemic control, reverse nonadherence and provide psychosocial support and education to people with diabetes. Research Question: What are the requisite components of a mentor needed to establish an effective mentorship relationship in a peer-to-peer coaching intervention for young adults with type one diabetes from the mentee’s perspective? Methods: A qualitative research design was used with Sandelowski’s (2010) qualitative descriptive approach. The Right Who, Respect, Information gathering, Consistency, and Support (TRICS) model was used as a theoretical framework (Donlan et al., 2017). Sample: 20 young adults aged 18-30 with T1D were recruited through snowball sampling. One semi-structured interview was completed with each participant. Data Analysis: All interview data were audiotaped and transcribed verbatim and managed through NVIVO. Findings/Discussion: Three themes were revealed in the data; 1) T1D is a personal journey through self-realization and acceptance; 2) inconsistencies in social support systems and 3) a mentor- is a companion on the journey. One supplemental theme highlights the perceived impact of COVID-19 on participants T1D. Conclusion: Individuals with T1D perceived there is value in cultivating a mentored form of peer support. Developing and evaluating a mentor/mentee dyad as a supportive intervention for T1D adults transitioning to adult care is the next step for future research.
  • The Relationship Between Sport Participation, Perceived Athletic Competence and Performance in University Sprinters

    Moore, Trevor; Applied Health Sciences Program
    Purpose: There is a need for research that investigates confidence, performance, and previous sports involvement among particular sports such as in track and field sprinters. The objective of this study was to investigate relations between previous sport participation, perceived athletic competence, and performance results in university track and field sprinters. Methods: The perceived athletic competence scale and previous sport participation questionnaire were implemented in the form of an online survey. The best performance times were collected from an online results database. All of the participants were enrolled in university and were members of their respective school’s track and field team. Measures of variability and descriptive statistics were calculated, and Analysis of Variance and t-tests were implemented to analyze potential differences amongst the variables of this study. Results: There were a total of 42 university track and field sprinters between the age of 18 and 23. The highest participated sports (sum) were track and field sprints (624), soccer (234), hockey (189), and basketball (164). A repeated measure ANOVA revealed a significant decrease in sports participation across all and between each of the three age groups (ages 8 to 13, 14 to 17, and 18+). Sports participation was the highest in the 8 to 13 age group. A bivariate correlation and linear regression analyses showed statistical insignificance between sport participation and perceived athletic competence. There was a low positive, but not statistically significant relationship from the 8 to 13 age group. Lastly, there was a statistically non-significant positive correlation for the first age (8 to 13) group and sprint performance times. Conclusion: The findings of the study contribute to the areas of sport participation, sport specialization, and athlete development by confirming what is already presently known while adding new support for track and field sprinting as a late specialization sport and the need for further analysis and investigation in the future with a more diverse sample and a larger sample size.
  • An Exploratory Study of a Coach's Response to Mandated Regulation Change

    Wilson, Jenna; Applied Health Sciences Program
    In 2017 the University Interscholastic League mandated a regulation change that all Texas high school football coaches required certification through Atavus Tackling Training. The mandate represented a significant modification to the way tackling is taught, aimed at addressing risk of concussion and serious trauma. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to explore how coaches’ respond to mandated regulation change. This qualitative study utilized an individual level of analysis contributing to academic works concerning the understanding of organizational change, including the use of Bridges’ (1991) Transition Model within a sporting context, and the call for agent focused perspective work in neo-institutional theory. Through an abductive analysis blend consisting of inductive coding, and deductive a priori concept of the Bridges Transition Model, this study aimed to discern the role transition played in actualizing institutional change by addressing the research questions: RQ1: How do coaches respond when faced with mandated regulation change? RQ2: How does their response reflect transition? To account for the complex nature of the 15 interviewed head football coaches’ responses, the qualitative methodology of this study utilized various triangulation methods such as data, analysis, and theory triangulation, to capture rigor and trustworthiness. Rich findings were mined from the data including 15 propositional statements that represented the a priori model and 10 inductive themes that contributed to defining the identity of a coach, and the sport. The overlap between inductive and deductive findings explored factors earmarking why coaches progress or regress through transition. This study found a relationship between responses and the Bridges Transition Model phases (addressing RQ2), in addition to multiple transition cycles, and triggers for movement through the phases based on coaches' individual needs. This research not only provided examples of what those responses were (addressing RQ1), but also discussed why coaches responded in various ways. Discussion included use of organizational change literature, Bridges’ (1991) Transition Model, and institutional theory, accounting for what coaches experienced and the beliefs and values impacting their decisions and thus, responses to mandated regulation change.
  • Dancing Beyond Diversity: The Experiences of Black Female Ballerinas

    Lyn, Amanda; Applied Health Sciences Program
    Ballet tends to reflect the intersection of femininity and whiteness, which conjure images of grace, beauty, innocence and fragility. This is the same discourse that is typically used to describe white womanhood (Fisher, 2016; McCarthy-Brown, 2011). This begs the question, “What are Black female dancer’s experiences of belonging?” Accordingly, this research seeks to understand the relationship between race and gender in the production, maintenance, and destruction of power within dance spaces. Using critical race methodologies of counter-storytelling, this research draws on Lefebvre’s (1991) understanding of social space (perceived space, conceived space, and lived space) and Black geographies to highlight and amplify the lived experiences of Black female ballet dancers. Qualitative data collection methods are utilized to explore these elements and to understand the everyday experiences within dance spaces. I will be conducting interviews, engaging in photo-elicitation, and collecting blog/social media data. This research will analyze how Black female bodies navigate dance spaces and how the interaction with these spaces influences a dancer’s perception of belonging. Accordingly, the objectives of this research are (1) to examine the ways in which experiences of space and belonging are racialized, (2) to deconstruct the historic and contemporary ideals of femininity and its interaction with Blackness, and (3) to explore how racialized ideals surrounding women’s bodies are perpetuated and/or challenged within dance spaces.
  • An Ethnographic Case Study of Developing and Maintaining the Coach-Athlete Relationship in Elite University Sport

    Corkery, Erin; Applied Health Sciences Program
    Relationships and social interactions are crucial components in sport participation from adolescence through to elite and professional levels of competition. Recently, there has been growing interest in the study of the coach-athlete relationship as a result of an increase in the awareness of its implications and potential impact on performance success. The purposes of this research were to: (a) describe and interpret how one university sport coach develops and maintains relationships with athletes within one competitive season, and (b) describe and interpret the practices (including intentions and actions) used to facilitate social interactions that nurture the coach-athlete relationship. One male coach and twelve female elite university athletes from one sport team participated in the research. Data were generated from two main sources: observations of team practices and games, and two individual interviews with the coach and three athletes (one interview during the competitive season and one interview after the season had ended). Through a constructivist lens, I investigated the participants’ unique perspectives of the ongoing processes within the coach-athlete relationship. I used Jowett’s (2001) adaptation of interdependence theory, the 3+1Cs model (closeness, commitment, complementarity, and co-orientation), to examine the perspectives of both coach and athletes and subsequently create an interpretive representation of my findings. Findings highlighted the variety of ways participants understood and interpreted their coach-athlete relationship. Several potential influences of these relationships were uncovered during data analysis such as: vulnerability, gender, communication, and self-reflection. Implications for coaches, athletes, and coach educators are discussed.
  • Staff Perceptions on the Qualities of Meaningful Relationships with Residents at End of Life in Long Term Care

    Attis, Leyla; Applied Health Sciences Program
    Long Term Care is a place where many people die, and it is the job of the staff members to assist the resident with their dying and death experience. A peaceful transition to death is largely dependent on the relationship between resident and staff members. In order to provide the best dying and death experience for the resident, I sought to explore staff perceptions on the qualities of a meaningful relationship with resident at the end of life. Using interpretive phenomenology as a qualitative research design and Heidegger’s (1962) concept of the lifeworld as a tool of analysis, I uncovered aspects of good ethical care by listening to the people who provide it. I completed a series of nine interviews and depicted staff perceptions of the qualities of their relationships with residents at the end of life. My data analysis uncovered three qualities of staff and resident relationship that positively influenced the dying and death experience for resident. These qualities are fearlessness, meaningful time and vulnerability. Furthermore, these findings reflect the mutual giving and receiving of care for both staff and resident throughout this relationship. Often this complex dynamic can be misunderstood or masked by what ministry standards tell us in how this relationship should look in LTC. My research exposes a different side of care at the end of life. With all the unknowns a resident is faced with at the end of life, the emotional relationship between resident and staff member can be the most comforting.
  • A critical examination of postnatal women’s community team sport participation: “Playing for team motherhood”

    Ritondo, Talia; Applied Health Sciences Program
    Using a feminist lens, the purpose of this study is to understand the meanings and experiences of physically active leisure of postnatal women. Specifically, I aimed to critically examine how gendered expectations of motherhood impact their participation in community team sport after the birth of a child. Applying a critical feminist narrative inquiry approach, three interviews were conducted with each of the six postnatal women participated in this study. Three salient narratives developed that best reflect my interpretation of participants’ experiences: 1) Confronting the Challenges of Returning to Team Sport; 2) Relationships Aiding the Return to Team Sport; 3) Resistance and Empowerment Through Community Team Sport Participation. Moreover, these findings uncovered that gendered expectations of motherhood have a drastic impact on postnatal women's physically active leisure and lives. This study highlights the importance of creating equitable and inclusive policies, childcare, and programming that encourages postnatal women to return to community team sport without the pressures of intensive mothering hindering their participation.
  • Understanding Parents' Perspectives of Youth Summer Hockey Camps using Importance-Performance Analysis: A Consideration of Value Equity Drivers

    de Souza, Raiven; Applied Health Sciences Program
    Given the move towards sport specialization, hockey has become subject to year-round participation. Summer hockey camps provide an outlet for children to continue to work on their skills and stay on the ice during the off-season. As there are numerous hockey camps operating during the summer months, camps compete against each other for consumers. Accordingly, the purpose of this study was twofold. First, the aim was to understand what value equity factors are most important to parents when deciding to register their child for a summer hockey camp; second, the researcher hoped to ascertain if summer hockey camp operators are performing to the deemed level of importance of those factors as determined by the parents, and assist the camps in identifying and closing any perception gaps in their offering. Surveys were used in order to complete an importance-performance analysis; 148 parents who registered their child in a summer hockey camp in the Niagara Region in 2019 completed the survey. Through the findings it is clear that factors of quality were of utmost importance to parents; all but one factor of convenience and price were over-delivered. Overall, parents are generally satisfied with the performance of summer hockey camps in the Niagara Region.
  • Management Perspectives: Implications of Plastics Free Sport Facilities’ Beverage Service

    Watkin, Gordon; Applied Health Sciences Program
    Water is vital in supporting all life on Earth, and without it, all living things would cease to exist. Despite this vitality, water resources are steadily polluted and mismanaged. The challenge of pre-eminence, however, is plastic pollution within global water resources. Plastic is exceptionally disruptive and harmful to all forms of life, killing aquatic animals and is a toxicant to the chemistry of drinking water utilized for human consumption. The review of literature sought to understand how waste ends up in Earth’s oceans and the role sport plays in contributing to and mitigating plastic waste and use. This research sought to illustrate the perspectives food and beverage managers (P=10) have toward the future of managing plastic waste at sporting events in their facilities. Discussions stemmed through semi-structured interviews, influenced by four central research questions, theoretically underpinned by Transition Management Theory (TMT), the Attitude-Behaviour-Gap (ABG), concepts of Environmental Sustainability (ES) and ecocentric approaches to management. The study primarily focused on perceptions of participants toward implementing plastic-free programming within their facilities, and additionally, the adoption and incorporation of biodegradable alternatives. Collectively, participants called for an increased cohesion between all levels of government and their corporate partners, and a federal standardization of recycling practices. Participants collectively did not align with Koskijoki’s (1993) perceptions of ecocentric consumerism, but demonstrated consistently an awareness and desire to reconcile plastic-related consequences.
  • Investigating the Value of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and Nintendo Wii Physical Activity for Older Adults

    Morse, Carson; Applied Health Sciences Program
    There has been much debate on best practices for limiting negative outcomes associated with relocation, sedentary lifestyle, and social isolation after older adults relocate to a residential care facility. This thesis is an exploration of the novel intervention combining Acceptance and Commitment Therapy with Nintendo Wii gameplay that was designed to improve initiation and adherence to physical activity. Acceptance and Commitment Therapy is an empirically based psychological intervention that utilizes mindfulness and acceptance techniques along with values-based action to improve one’s perception of life worth. The primary aim for this thesis was to understand more about the experiences that older adults residing in a residential care facility have with this intervention. Four participants were observed during the intervention and interviewed after the intervention. Multiple forms of analyses were performed such as, inductive interview content analysis, inductive and deductive analysis of observational field notes, deductive analysis of interviews, and deductive analysis of inductive findings. Results revealed that Nintendo Wii gameplay provides a convenient outlet for physical activity where older adults can participate in activities they once enjoyed and individuals with minimal functionality have the capacity to successfully and safely play the Nintendo Wii. Further, older adults prefer to participate in physical activities that are fun and do not feel like exercise; and, participate in small groups rather than large groups. After the intervention only one participant perceived that participation lead to physical health improvements, however, all participants perceived that the intervention increased mental health and social functioning levels. Additionally, all participants understood and were in agreement with the principles of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, which increased initiation and adherence to physical activity. The intervention featured in this study could be useful for these purposes with similar participants in residential care facilities, although additional research is necessary to corroborate the findings of this study and to continue developing new knowledge in this area.
  • Gladiator Gear: The unintended consequences of protective equipment in gridiron football compared to rugby union

    Brownbridge, Cullum; Applied Health Sciences Program
    Sports equipment has evolved over time to both enhance performance and reduce the injury risk. Protective equipment is particularly important in contact sports where injuries are frequent. In American and Canadian football, helmets and shoulder pads are two pieces of protective equipment that are strictly implemented to absorb hits of massive force to reduce the risk of head and upper body injuries respectively. While the risk of injury is reduced, the athlete's calculated perspective of risk might be altered. This change in risk equilibrium has the potential unintended consequence of the individual foregoing caution and playing in a faster and more aggressive style. This altered behavior not only increases the individual's own injury risk, but also puts other athletes who are on the receiving end of contact at greater risk. This displacement of risk is particularly dangerous when an athlete is hit in an area that is unprotected and vulnerable, or in an area where the equipment is not as effective as perceived. Drawing on existing research, theories of risk in sport, and qualitative interviews with 11 male, adult athletes who have competed in both football with significant protective equipment and rugby with minimal protective equipment, this study examines the relationships and potential disjuncture between sports equipment changes, athlete perceptions of injury risks, and actual injury risks. The purpose of this study is to compare physical contact, safety, and risk between the two high-contact sports, focusing on the different uses of mandated, protective equipment.
  • An Examination of ‘Choice’ on Mental Health among Informal Caregivers to Persons with Intellectual Developmental Disabilities

    Soucie-Vukmanich, Ashley; Applied Health Sciences Program
    Introduction: To examine the effects of ‘choice’ on the mental health outcomes of informal intellectual developmental disability (IDD) caregivers, which has been examined in previous literature in alternate caregiving contexts. Background: Stressors of the caregiving role have been shown to negatively affect the mental health of informal caregivers in multiple contexts, where stressors can include a specific task or number of tasks, time spent caregiving or perceived stress levels. However, research has also shown that whether the caregiver identifies as having a choice in taking on their role may also have an affect on their mental health status, where lack of choice may cause psychological impairments, and decreased life satisfaction. Methodology: Using the General Social Survey – Cycle 26 – Caregiving and Care Receiving, linear regression and multinomial logistic regression analyses were analyzed to determine how choice in the caregiving role affects the caregivers mental health in relation to numerous caregiving stressors. Results: The results show that those who have higher levels of stress experience worse mental health outcomes, alongside those who have more tasks, and more time allotted to their duties. Choice approaches significance in relation to mental health, however, does not have a significant relationship with the development of mental health outcomes in these caregivers when the burdens of the caregiving role are considered. Conclusion: Overall, this research shows the complexities in which the informal caregiving role has on the development of mental health concerns within this population, where the burdens of the role play a more significant role on their mental health than their perception of choice.
  • Promoting father involvement in breastfeeding

    Hansen, Amanda; Applied Health Sciences Program
    Fathers influence mothers’ decisions to breastfeed and for how long they intend to breastfeed. Previous studies have found that positive breastfeeding outcomes are associated with fathers providing any type of supportive behavior. Above other types of support, responsive behaviours sensitive to the mother’s needs are more likely to increase exclusive breastfeeding significantly longer. This study tested the feasibility of an intervention that provided a one-time 60-minute session to an all-fathers group about the breastfeeding team and the effect of the fathers’ satisfaction with the education in terms of fathers’ breastfeeding support behaviours. This study was carried out in a maternity hospital in Canada where an average of 1,500 infants are born each year. Twenty fathers from a variety of ethnic backgrounds received this learning. The group was led by a male facilitator as some research suggests that men prefer to learn from their male peers. The facilitator was trained using the Father Breastfeeding Involvement Group: Facilitator Manual. The average session lasted approximately 60 minutes with an average group of two participants. The fathers discussed ways they could practice responsive behaviours unique to their partner and infant as an active member in the breastfeeding team. The fathers reported high satisfaction rates of attending the session and that the session created a comfortable atmosphere to share their thoughts openly. Second time fathers highly enjoyed the session finding it a valuable, informative refresher. The fathers liked the convenience of attending a session in hospital before their infant was discharged home. At one month, fathers completed the Partner Breastfeeding Influence Scale to determine the amount of specific involvement they practiced. There was a positive relationship between fathers’ overall satisfaction with the session and reports of greater father breastfeeding support behaviours. One limitation of this study is the small sample size. Data collection was interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic because nonessential research was abruptly stopped within a few weeks of the program’s commencement. However, the fathers were interested and enjoyed the session, providing evidence that a larger number of participants was feasible. This knowledge can be used in planning future father involvement in breastfeeding interventions.

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