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ERIC Number: EJ830252
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006-May
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 39
ISSN: ISSN-1357-3322
Able Bodies and Sport Participation: Social Constructions of Physical Ability for Gendered and Sexually Identified Bodies
Wellard, Ian
Sport, Education and Society, v11 n2 p105-119 May 2006
Although there is much debate about the positive effects of active sporting pursuits for the young, in reality many young people are still excluded or deterred from taking part as much as they would like. There are still particular bodily performances which are considered more suitable for taking part in mainstream sport, and invariably one of the determining factors relates to gendered performances which extol competitive, aggressive masculinity. Sporting activities during childhood and school are often considered either enjoyable or unpleasant depending upon the individual's success, or not, in "making the grade" during sporting activities through their ability to perform appropriate masculinity or "exclusive masculinity". The article draws on recent research into body practices, masculinities and sport. A range of men who actively participated in mainstream and gay tennis clubs were interviewed about their experiences of sporting activity throughout their lives. A factor which emerged from their adult readings of their childhood experiences of sport was the uniform enjoyment of engaging in physical activity. However, the men's ability to participate fully was more reliant upon specific bodily performances which were considered an essential aspect of mainstream sport and physical education. The article aims to highlight the importance of recognising the social factors which shape the way in which individuals are allowed to approach sport and ultimately, enjoy their bodies to the best of their abilities. (Contains 2 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A