The impact of youth adapted sport on physical activity of adults with disabilities

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
David Lewis Kyle (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Pamela Kocher Brown

Abstract: People with disabilities are significantly less physically active than those without disabilities, primarily due to a lack of adequate adapted programs, which can lead to a variety of negative health consequences. Although physical activity typically decreases during the transition to adulthood, studies have shown that quality targeted youth programs positively influence physical activity levels into and through adulthood. The few communities that offer programs for youth with disabilities tend to focus on competitive adapted sports. It is not well known how these programs influence physical activity levels into adulthood. The purpose of this mixed methods study was to determine the influence of participation in formal youth adapted sport on physical activity and the motivation to exercise after the transition to adulthood for people with disabilities. Fifty adults with disabilities (16 female, 34 male) were surveyed in order to measure current physical activity levels and motivation to exercise, along with their perceptions of what they received from participating in youth adapted sport. Twelve adults with disabilities (4 female, 8 male) participated in an interview to describe their perceptions of youth adapted sport experiences and how they relate to their current level of physical activity. Results show that 50% participated in some form of youth adapted sport with the most popular being wheelchair basketball, while 85% of adults participate in individual activities. Of those interviewed, it was perceived that it had a significant impact leading to an overall active lifestyle with a focus on enjoyment, health, and preventing disability progression.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2019
Adapted sport, Disability, Paralympic sport, Wheelchair basketball
Sports for people with disabilities
Physical fitness for people with disabilities

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