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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://dspace.lboro.ac.uk/2134/18458

Title: Wheeling to London 2012: the psycho-social health and well-being of Great Britain's Wheelchair Basketball players over time
Authors: Best, Melanie
Keywords: Wheelchair basketball
Health
Psycho-social health
Well-being
Disability
Disability sport
Wheelchair sport
Paralympian
London 2012
Issue Date: 2016
Publisher: © Melanie K. Best
Abstract: The purpose of this PhD was to explore the psycho-social health (PSH) and well-being (WB) of Great Britain’s (GB) Wheelchair Basketball (WhB) players over time, starting from when they became disabled and culminating in the London 2012 Paralympic Games. The sample comprised 16 players (8 male, 8 female) and 4 coaches. They were interviewed on three occasions – 2 years before, within a year of and a year after London. Observations spanned this period, whilst data was also collected via two visual methods: auto-photography (AP) and timelining. All data was analysed using a thematic analytical approach. First the challenges to PSH and WB of being disabled are discussed, with the diversity of experience highlighted. Secondly in exploring the role of spinal units and story-tellers in initiating players into sport, a lottery which risked their PSH and WB is exposed. Whilst copious benefits of recreational disability sport are described, being a GB WhB player is revealed as an extreme health rollercoaster. Just as being a Paralympian offers perks and privileges, so too does it risk players becoming obsessed. Performance and health are shown to be uniquely related and yet not always simultaneously achievable. Finally, from the pride of wearing the jersey and competing at a home Paralympics, to shattered dreams and unfulfilled ambitions, London 2012 is relived. The research concludes that creating a ‘Healthy Paralympian’ is a challenging task and yet winning formula. Recommendations are made to realise this aim, whilst those which have already been adopted by GB WhB are also shared.
Description: A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.
Sponsor: none
URI: https://dspace.lboro.ac.uk/2134/18458
Appears in Collections:PhD Theses (Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences)

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