• Leveling the Playing Field: Assessing Physical Literacy in Children and Youth with Physical Disabilities

      Dugas, Erica; Applied Health Sciences Program
      Introduction: Research indicates that there are challenges associated with individuals with a disability acquiring mature movement patterns similar to their able-bodied peers (Capio, Sit & Abernethy, 2011), resulting in the notion that they are physically illiterate. Additionally, the benefits of physical literacy (PL) have not been comprehensively investigated in children/youth with disabilities, nor is there a reliable tool to assess PL in this population. Purpose: The main purpose of this research is to pilot a PL assessment tool for children/youth with physical disabilities. Methods: By modifying elements from Canadian Sport for Life’s Physical Literacy Assessment for Youth (PLAY), participants recruited from two recreation programs will take part in a pre- and post-test assessment using the amended tool. Lived experiences are also documented using semi-structured interviews. Results: Results indicate that everyone, regardless of ability, can be physically literate. Participants’ scores in individual PLAYSelf categories paralleled their ranking of PL as the most significant category of literacy. However, this was contradicted by ~70% of participants who testified to partaking in sedentary activities during their leisure time and reported limited participation in a wide range of physical activities. Conclusions: PL is an inclusive concept accessible to all and represents a unique journey for each person. The revised PL assessment tool represents the multidimensional facets of PL, but improvement is necessary to accommodate Paralympic or adapted sports/activities in the PLAYInventory questionnaire. Future research should look to comprehensively assess levels of physical literacy in individuals with any disability or exceptionality.
    • Life after hockey : an examination of athletic career transition and the National Hockey League's career transition program

      Andrijiw, Andre Michael; Applied Health Sciences Program (Brock University, 2011-05-17)
      The existent body of athletic career retirement literature is scant in studies of career transition programs. In an effort to attend to this analytical gap, the present study set out to examine the transitions of National Hockey League (NHL; ice hockey) alumni, as well as the effect ~and effectiveness of their respective career transition program, the Life After Hockey program. Interviews with 17 NHL/program alumni revealed that quality of transition (to post-playing life) was affected by: the continuity between pre- and postretirement environments; athletic identity; physical/psychological health (particularly with respect to post-concussion syndrome); selective coping strategies (e.g., preretirement planning (e.g., financial planning, continued education), positive reinterpretation, alcohol/substance abuse); and social support. Also affecting quality of transition, and found to be highly effective (particularly in generating new occupational opportunities, assisting in the acquisition of new skills, and providing a system of continuous support), was the Life After Hockey program.
    • The lived experience of mothering a child with autism: a hermeneutic phenomenological understanding

      Micsinszki, Samantha; Applied Health Sciences Program (Brock University, 2014-08-28)
      Autism Spectrum Disorder is a complex developmental disorder with increasing prevalence. Despite the significant role of mothers, often seen as primary caregivers, there is limited understanding of this experience. The purpose of this study was to explore the everyday experience of mothers with children with autism. Accounts of lived experience were collected through research conversations with six mothers and analyzed using van Manen’s (1990) orientation to hermeneutic phenomenology. The main themes include: It Can’t Be Autism, The Womb is Extended, The Locus of Other, and The Womb is Now and is Forever. The findings suggest that mothers experienced a transformation from mother to mother with a child with autism; one that mirrors the transformation from woman to mother (Bergum, 1989). In this transformation, mothers move from suspicion of the potential diagnosis to acceptance that they are mothers with children whose needs define them and potentially, mothers whose wombs are forever extended.
    • Lived experiences of children with disabilities in various movement programs

      Hedley, Melanie; Applied Health Sciences Program (Brock University, 2011-03-08)
      This research offered children with disabilities the opportunity to express their voices in the description of their movement experiences. Three children aged 10-13 shared their experiences in school physical education and adapted physical activity. Observations of participants using interactive media activities in an adapted physical activity program were used to supplement interviews. The aim of this research was to discover how future professionals are prepared to design and implement physical activity and physical education programs for children with disabilities. A document analysis of Ontario university course calendars in the fields of physical education and kinesiology, disability studies, and teacher education was utilized. Data from each data context underwent four levels of reduction: 1) content, 2) categorical, 3) thematic, and 4) indigenous typologies. Findings are presented at each level leading to the presentation of indigenous typologies. Typologies of Forbidden-ness and Dichotomous Thinking were identified in the research.
    • Locating Intergenerational Sense of Self: Intersections of Genealogy with Leisure and Tourism

      Higginbotham, Gregory; Applied Health Sciences Program (Brock University, 2014-03-07)
      Situated at the intersection of leisure and tourism, there is currently a renewed interest and curiosity in ancestral lineages. Focusing on amateur genealogists who pursue, and travel for, a leisure engagement of genealogy, this qualitative research study endeavours to investigate their quests for personal identity and locations of an intergenerational sense of self. With the adoption of a narrative inquiry method, life story interviews were conducted with four amateur genealogists. Findings from an analysis of the narratives have been organized into five core themes, each of which contributes to our understanding of these amateur genealogists’ experiences of leisure and travel. While the amateur genealogists do not acknowledge their leisure engagements as a quest for personal identity, they make use of such engagements to locate an intergenerational sense of self and gain enriched self-understandings. Moreover, by facilitating intersections of genealogy, leisure, and tourism, several key insights are offered that may be of particular interest to scholars in both fields of study.
    • Major Sport Event Operational Planning Issues and Strategies: A Multi-Case Delphi Study

      Greco, Nicole; Applied Health Sciences Program
      This study examined the operational planning, implementation and execution issues of major sport events, as well as the mitigation and management strategies used to address these issues, with the aim of determining best practices in sport event operational planning. The three Research Questions were: 1) What can previous major sport events provide to guide the operational management of future events? 2) What are the operational issues that arise in the planning and execution of a major sport event, how are they mitigated and what are the strategies used to deal with these issues? 3) What are the best practices for sport event operational planning and how can these practices aid future events? Data collection involved a modified Delphi technique that consisted of one round of in-depth interviews followed by two rounds of questionnaires. Both data collection and analysis were guided by an adaptation of the work of Parent, Rouillard & Leopkey (2011) with a focus on previously established issue and strategy categories. The results provided a list of Top 26 Prominent Issues and Top 17 Prominent Strategies with additional issue-strategy links that can be used to aid event managers producing future major sport events. The following issue categories emerged as having had the highest impact on previous major sport events that participants had managed: timing, funding and knowledge management. In addition, participants used strategies from the following categories most frequently: other, formalized agreements and communication.
    • The Making of a Quality Improvement Team in a Community Health Centre: What Does it Take

      Blundell, Laura; Applied Health Sciences Program
      The purpose of this study was to use Bronfenbrenner’s ecological model of development to explore how a quality improvement (QI) team within a Community Health Centre (CHC) identifies the elements that have led to its success. This was a single case study, which took place in an Ontario Community Health Centre. The study included the reflection of a key manager who was also the researcher in this project. In addition, the study included 6 individual interviews with QI team members. Five themes emerged: (1) supportive management, (2) safe spaces, (3) ability to embrace collective change, (4) signs of success, and (5) collaborative environment. This study suggests that these five themes outline a strategy for successfully implementing QI in a primary care environment.
    • Managing Volunteers in Canadian Community Sport Organizations

      Mrak, Joel; Applied Health Sciences Program (Brock University, 2011-02-17)
      This study examined the use of human resource management (HRM) practices with volunteers in Canadian Community Sport Organizations (CSOs). Using the Volunteer Management Inventory (VMI; Cuskelly, Taylor, Hoye & Darcy, 2006), 219 leaders of associations in basketball, curling, ice hockey, skating, skiing, swimming, and volleyball participated in this study and identified current trends in HRM practices and perceived issues in the retention of volunteers. Data collected was analyzed using mean and descriptive statistics, T-tests, ANOVAs, and regression analyses. Results indicate that there is a varying use of HRM practices amongst the organizations, and also a significant correlation between the use of HRM practices and the retention of volunteers, particularly board members. Implications and future research directions are discussed regarding how HRM practices and principles may be applied to CSOs.
    • The meaning of multiple medication use in adults: A qualitative study

      Dyer, Carolyn; Applied Health Sciences Program (Brock University, 2014-08-11)
      Over half of prescribed medications are not taken as prescribed, resulting in health and economic consequences. Using constructivist grounded theory, 15 interviews were conducted to develop a theory on understanding the medication adherence choices of individuals, who were between the ages of 40 to 55, were diagnosed with a chronic condition, and taking three or more medications. The results indicate that participants are engaging in self-management strategies, with massive variance in adherence behaviours. Medications are sacrificed for personal and financial reasons, resonating with feelings of fear for the person’s current situation and future. Individuals are struggling with who they have become to who they once were, which becomes related to their medications. Finally, individuals are citing the impact of their physician; citing barriers to communication and Canada’s health care system. Participants’ experiences provided an understanding of the meanings individuals associate with their medications and how this impacts their decision-making.
    • The Meaning of the Virtual YMCA After School Program for Former Participants: An Exploratory Study

      Kerr, Laura; Applied Health Sciences Program (Brock University, 2013-01-14)
      Research has shown that after school programs can provide children with opportunities that help foster positive development and adaptation. Current research meets the need for identifying short term outcomes, program standards, and short term evaluation techniques, however less understood is the lasting meaning of participation for previous participants after their participation. The purpose of this study was to explore the meaning and perceived impacts of participation in a preventative, skill-building after school program for former participants. Using an exploratory case study approach, interviews were conducted with six previous participants of the Virtual YMCA and a former school principal. Reconstructed narratives and analyzed transcripts show that participants do still derive meaning and significance from their participation in the program, although highly individualized. Significant aspects of the program are identified, as well as the participant’s perceived impacts which are still present today. Discussion for practitioners, researchers, and funders is provided.
    • Métis or Moniyâw: Explorative stories of decolonizing my Métis identity

      Montgomery, Bob; Applied Health Sciences Program
      This thesis explores my emergent processes of identifying as a Métis person through autoethnographic narratives. I provide an overview of Métis history, identification, and decolonization, especially written by and for Aboriginal peoples. Using a decolonizing framework of Indigenous métissage (Donald, 2012) – which brings together complex, and nuanced influences to build knowledge – and an autoethnographic methodology, I explore cultural knowledges through critical self-reflection. I collected autoethnographic data in the form of personal journals and family artifacts; additionally, I shared conversations with other Métis peoples, which I used to further inform my own processes of identification and decolonization. The study results are presented as narrative vignettes, offering conclusions about: a) cultural ambivalence; b) privilege; c) language and music reclamation; and d) building relationships with both people and land. This research builds upon literature by, about, and for the benefit of Aboriginal peoples and settlers and offers considerations relevant to decolonization and identification.
    • Mindfully Making Our Way in the World: The Exploration of Mindfulness Among Post-Secondary Students

      Kerridge, Kaitlyn; Applied Health Sciences Program
      Abstract Students across North America are facing new challenges due to the competitive economic climate, increased debt from student loans, and infinite access to technology. The practice of mindfulness shows great promise as an intervention to aid young people to cope with the daily challenges of student life. The purpose of this narrative inquiry was to explore mindfulness among post-secondary students. The major research question guiding this inquiry was What is the meaning of mindfulness among post-secondary students? The design of the study followed a narrative methodology. Data consisted of interview transcripts and journal entries. Six participants were interviewed in the first round and three were selected for a second storytelling interview. Data were analyzed using qualitative thematic techniques and followed narrative principles of re-storying. The central finding of the study is that mindfulness is experiential and comprised of three core elements: the practice, the journey and the impact. Analysis highlighted a) the journey is extremely unique, includes some kind of pivotal moment, and is transformative in nature on the individual’s life, b) the practice can be divided into two types of mindfulness: “state mindfulness” or “situational mindfulness” and, c) mindfulness has a positive impact on mental health, perspective, and happiness. Findings suggest post-secondary students who adopt a mindfulness practice find purpose and meaning in their lives and have positive mental health. Building on this study, future research should continue to collect rich qualitative data on the lived experience of students in order to empower them and give meaning to their experience. This research can be used to inform the development of curriculum and programing and community health interventions.
    • The Mirror Room Project: A Critical Ethnographic Program Evaluation of a Teaching Personal and Social Responsibility Based Youth Development Program

      Baker, Carrie; Applied Health Sciences Program (Brock University, 2012-10-11)
      Amongst a host of other benefits, proper physical education has the possibility to create a safe place where responsibility can be transferred from the teacher/facilitator, to the student. This is especially true with an underserved population. This critical program evaluation of the program CHARM was done for the purpose of program improvement. This research was a place for participants to share their experiences of the program. The participants were 5 underserved youth, 5 undergraduate students, 3 teachers and 1 graduate student. Observations, interviews, and document analysis were used to gather data. Data was analyzed using a first level read-through, and two second-level analyses. Summaries were written, and cross-case analyses were completed. The main finding of the research was the development of a Handbook, which is a guide to running the program. Secondary findings include issues of program structure, goal setting, meaningful relationships, roles, SNAP, and an outlier in the data.
    • The Moderating Effects of Appearance Commentary on the Relationship Between Weight Status and Physical Activity Participation in Female College Students

      Cline, Lindsay; Applied Health Sciences Program (Brock University, 2011-08-24)
      When looked at individually, overweight status and a higher frequency of negative appearance commentary (AC) are associated with lower physical activity (PA) levels. However, the combined effect has yet to be examined. The purpose of this study was to examine if the frequency of AC moderated the relationship between weight status and PA in college-aged females. No significant differences in PA levels (F(1,99)=2.41, p=.12) were found between the Never Overweight and Previously/Presently Overweight groups. Significant correlations existed for both negative AC (r=-.30, p=.00) and positive AC (r=.20, p=.05) with PA participation. AC did not significantly moderate the relationship between weight status and PA (F(2,95)=.65, p=.52, R2 adjusted=.13) as the interaction term did not account for any additional increase in variance (ΔR2=.01). Overall, AC frequency does not moderate the relationship between weight status and PA; other predictor variables should be explored.
    • Moderators of the Relationship between Family Caregiver Proxy-Ratings and Person with Dementia Self-Ratings of Quality of Life

      Amirthavasagam, Sathya; Applied Health Sciences Program
      As the dementia spectrum lacks any viable cure, quality of life is typically regarded as an essential measure of assessing the clinical course and evaluating interventions. With caregivers typically providing this rating to health professionals, the literature has noted inconsistencies between caregiver and person with dementia (PwD) ratings of quality of life and suggested several factors may moderate the rating relationship. To investigate this, an intraclass correlation coefficient was calculated to observe rating agreement and moderator regression analysis was conducted to explore potential moderators. Potential moderators of caregiver burden, caregiver age, caregiver income, PwD IADLs/ADLs, PwD education, PwD cognitive impairment, PwD depressive symptom severity, PwD behavioural symptom severity, as well as relationship between caregiver and PwD. Utilizing secondary data from 107 recruited dyads, analyses conducted found fair agreement between caregivers and those with dementia while none of the hypothesized factors were found to moderate the rating relationship.
    • Motivation among reluctant readers: Capturing the goal setting experience in the 'Reading Rocks' program

      Sendzik, Samantha; Department of Child and Youth Studies
      This study explored goal setting among children with reading disabilities. Of particular focus was the goal setting experience of participants in a literacy-based program, titled “Reading Rocks”. Reading Rocks, offered by the Learning Disabilities Association of Niagara Region (LDANR), supports children with reading disabilities to become more confident readers. The program aims to strengthen literacy skills among vulnerable readers. Another essential component of the program targets children’s reading motivation through goal setting, a recognized strategy for increasing motivation. I outline the importance of reading, followed by exploring children’s reluctance to read. Goal setting is examined as an opportunity to increase motivation among reluctant readers. My research included a qualitative case study of one child-tutor pair in the program. I utilized a think-aloud protocol, a photo elicitation interview, and researcher observations to collect my data. Lastly, I triangulated the data to analyze how children in Reading Rocks experience goal setting.
    • Motivation and psychological need salience in the experiences of initiating and maintaining exercise as an older female adult

      LeBlanc, Meghan E.; Applied Health Sciences Program (Brock University, 2008-11-04)
      Objectives: The primary objective ofthis study was to explore motivation and psychological need salience in the initiatory and maintenance experiences of older female exercIsers. Methods: Female initiates (n = 3) and reflective maintainers (n = 3) 65 years of age or older (M = 76 years; SD = 5.37) participated in semi-structured interviews. Data were analyzed holistically and categorically, following a hermeneutic approach to inquiry. Results: Perceived importance of exercise benefits appeared to be the strongest motive for initiates at this stage of life and connections to others were perceived as valued, but less important in exercise contexts. Also, listening to one's body over instructions from the exercise leader emerged as a key factor to success. Conclusions: Overall, the results ofthis study implicate more self-determined than controlled motives as sources of regulation in older females' exercise initiation experiences. Evidence for psychological needs was more heterogeneous and less conclusive.
    • Motivation and Reading Achievement: Understanding the Needs and Motivation Processes of Adult Literacy Learners

      Tsujimoto, Kimberley; Department of Child and Youth Studies
      Adult struggling readers are understudied and most evidence-based remedial approaches target youth. This thesis examined relationships among motivation constructs across typical and struggling adult readers. Age was also investigated as a moderator in these relationships. Participants included 198 adults in adult basic education and 138 undergraduate students. Examining the influence of self-efficacy on reading achievement, moderation analyses indicated there were stronger relationships for typical readers. Furthermore, stronger relationships were found for younger participants when moderated by age. Additional regression analyses identified positive relationships between two measures of intrinsic motivation and reading value. This relationship was replicated for avoidance and value. Though age was not uniformly sampled across ability grouping, age did not account for these effects. Despite difficulties with reading, adults still exhibited motivation to engage with texts with equal to greater levels of reading value. Value and intrinsic motivation may have unique developmental courses associated with longstanding reading challenges.
    • Moving from values inaction to values-in-action : an exploration of how values can be managed intentionally by national sports organizations

      Bell-Laroche, Dina; Applied Health Sciences Program (Brock University, 2010-10-26)
      The study examined the intentional use of National Sport Organizations' (NSOs) stated values. Positive Organizational Scholarship (POS) was applied to an Appreciative Inquiry (AI) approach of interviewing NSO senior leaders. One intention of this research was to foster a connection between academia and practitioners, and in so doing highlight the gap between values inaction and values-in-action. Data were collected from nine NSOs through multiple-case studies analysis of interview transcripts, websites, and constitutional statements. Results indicated that while the NSOs operated from a Management by Objectives (MBO) approach they were interested in exploring how Management by Values (MBV) might improve their organization's performance. Eleven themes from the case studies analysis contributed to the development of a framework. The 4-1 framework described how an NSO can progress through different stages by becoming more intentional in how they use their values. Another finding included deepening our understanding of how values are experienced within the NSO and then transferred across the entire sport. Participants also spoke about the tension that arises among their NSO' s values as well as the dominant values held by funding agents. This clash of values needs to be addressed before the tension escalates. Finally, participants expressed a desire to learn more about how values can be used more intentionally to further their organization's purpose. As such, strategies for intentionally leveraging values are also suggested. Further research should explore how helpful the 4-1 framework can be to NSOs leaders who are in the process of identifying or renewing their organization's values.
    • Music Lessons: Exploring the Role and Meaning of Music Among Community-Dwelling Older Adults with Dementia

      Elliott, Melanie; Applied Health Sciences Program
      An aging population and increasing rates of dementia point to the need for alternative strategies to allow individuals to age in place. The purpose of this multiple case study is to explore, from an insider’s perspective, the role and meaning of music in the lives of individuals with dementia who are aging in place. The following three questions guide this exploration: What does music mean to someone with dementia and if/how has this changed, over time? How does music influence the health and wellbeing of individuals with dementia? How is music integrated into the day-to-day lives of individuals with dementia aging in place? Critical qualitative research was conducted through semi-structured interviews, observations, and videos. All three participants were in the early stages of dementia, living in the community (not in an institution), residing in Ontario, using music in their lives in a routine capacity, and not enrolled in music therapy. The partners of each of the participants were also included in the data collection process. The qualitative data was analyzed following a 10-step process that integrated the textual, auditory, and visual data. Analysis revealed that music plays a beneficial, yet complicated, role in these individuals’ lives. Analysis highlighted ‘connection’ as the central theme of the study with the various ‘connectors’ - self, partner, music and the study itself - as subthemes. Connection to self is discussed through present moment awareness, accessing memories, and self-expression. Connection to partner is explained in light of self-connection and spending time together. The connection to music acknowledges the self and partner as well as the need to keep things “ordinary”. Lastly, connection to the research is a methodological finding that speaks to the transformative nature of qualitative research. Findings from each sub-theme are described using examples from the data and discussed in relation to the literature. This study provides insight into the growing body of interdisciplinary literature dedicated to dementia, music, aging in place, and contemplative practices, as well as makes suggestions for future areas of research.