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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Perceptions of Athletic Identity among Freeride Skiers and Snowboarders with Spinal Cord Injuries
by Stephens, Andrew, M.A., Prescott College, 2018, 123; 13427363
Abstract (Summary)

This study explores freeride skiers’/snowboarders’ perceptions of their athletic identity following a spinal cord injury (SCI) and retrospective perceptions prior to incurring a SCI. The overall research focuses on determining if there is a change in athletic identity pre and post-injury. In addition, the research delves into the ways an athlete’s self-perception hinders or helps them regain a sense of self and athletic identity as they train to reintegrate into sport. The population recruited for this study are participants in the High Fives Foundation, a nonprofit whose mission is to help athletes recover from traumatic spinal cord injuries sustained while participating in mountain action sports. This study uses mixed-method sequential explanatory in order to better represent respondent data. The quantitative data is based on responses from twenty-eight study participants who completed the AIMS Plus questionnaire. Results are presented using descriptive statistics in table form by thematic groupings. The qualitative interviews include eleven athlete respondents and is analyzed using narrative analysis. The overall findings highlight an initial drop in athletic identity following a traumatic injury due to physical and emotional impacts. Participants who highly identified as athletes prior to injury tend to be more driven toward recovery and reintegration into sport. Through the data gleaned in this study, it becomes apparent that post-SCI respondent athletes broaden their definition of athletic identity to include new physical and emotional approaches to sport.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Mitten, Denise
Commitee: Kirk, Jeffrey, Powers, Deborah
School: Prescott College
Department: Adventure Education
School Location: United States -- Arizona
Source: MAI 58/06M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Social research, Recreation
Keywords: Adaptive sports, Athletic identity, Skiing, Snowboarding, Spinal cord injury, Sports reintegration
Publication Number: 13427363
ISBN: 978-1-392-20994-3
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