Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The Phenomenon of Community: A Qualitative Study of the Ultrarunning Community
by Quicke, Jenna M., M.A., Prescott College, 2017, 122; 10276702
Abstract (Summary)

This paper used a qualitative data set of interviews to describe the phenomenon of community in ultrarunning, as well as to define what it means to be an ultrarunner as told from an insider’s perspective. The literature review summarized theories including: social group structure, asset based community development, pain community, experience stretching, and positive psychology, and how they form a unique shared experience within the ultrarunning community. In addition to interviews, participants provided a photograph to be utilized for photo elicitation, and a photo analysis by the researcher.

The results of this study suggest that ultrarunning communities may be structured around shared experience, and specifically the experience of multiple perspectives of ultramarathon racing. Stereotypes of ultrarunners are inaccurate, and everyone is welcome in the community so long as they are helping promote the sport in a positive way. The majority of ultrarunners views their role in the ultrarunning community as motivators and strive to maintain a positive and inclusive sport for current and future ultrarunning community members. The descriptive narratives of shared experiences gathered in this study of the values of the ultrarunning community illustrate how ultrarunning is an inclusive group that promotes the integrity of the sport through multi-faceted roles of ultrarunning events.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Powers, Deborah
Commitee: MacNairn, Ian, Mitten, Denise
School: Prescott College
Department: Adventure Education
School Location: United States -- Arizona
Source: MAI 56/04M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Social research
Keywords: Community, Phenomenology, Positive psychology, Shared experience, Sports psychology, Ultrarunning
Publication Number: 10276702
ISBN: 978-1-369-78826-6
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