Parents in the parasport pathway Parental experiences of facilitating their child s engagement in competitive disability sport.pdf (1.91 MB)
Parents in the parasport pathway: parental experiences of facilitating their child's engagement in competitive disability sport
journal contributionposted on 2023-11-17, 14:14 authored by Janine CoatesJanine Coates, P David Howe
Research examining the role of parenting in mainstream sporting environments is well developed but little attention has been focused upon parents of young athletes with disabilities. Parents are often a silent workforce in enabling the engagement of young people in competitive sport. In the case of young athletes with parasport aspirations, parenting brings with it added complexity, both practically and psychologically. Thus, it is necessary to understand the experiences of these parents so appropriate support mechanisms can be developed. As a result, this research asked, “what are parents experiences of supporting their disabled child through their parasport journeys?” Using in-depth reflexive thematic analysis underpinned by phenomenology, interviews with eleven parents of elite youth para-athletes who were based in the United Kingdom were carried out. Our analysis indicated parents of young para-athletes share values relating to equality and inclusion, and that social exclusion in mainstream education environments directed these young people toward sport. Parents discussed the complex and multifarious roles they undertook to support their child’s sport engagement, indicating several challenges including limited local disability-specific sport opportunity and funding difficulties. They also highlighted key benefits for the child (e.g. ‘fitting in’, social belonging and independence) as well as for them (e.g. parental support, worrying less). Findings are discussed in relation to existing literature, and key recommendations in relation to policy and practice are made.
- Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences
Published inJournal of Applied Sport Psychology
PublisherTaylor & Francis
- VoR (Version of Record)
Rights holder© The Author(s)
Publisher statementThis is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/), which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, providedthe original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way.