Children’s perspectives on the effectiveness of the Playing for Life philosophy in an afterschool sports program

Fiona CM Ling, Andrea Farrow, Damian Farrow, Jason Berry, Remco CJ Polman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The Playing for Life (P4L) philosophy was developed based on the concept of game play. It emphasizes learning through games within the sporting context to promote sports participation. The main aim of the study was to qualitatively evaluate the effectiveness of the P4L philosophy in contributing to enjoyment and in encouraging continued participation in sports. A total of 97 children (aged 5–12 years), who participated in the Active After-school Communities program that adopted the P4L philosophy by the Australian Sports Commission, took part in 56 paired or individual interviews. Transcripts were initially deductively coded based on pre-determined themes, and were inductively coded for additional themes that were indicative of the effectiveness of the afterschool sports program following the P4L philosophy. Main themes identified from the interviews were motor development and knowledge acquisition, psychological and cognitive benefits, social development, and active living awareness. The P4L philosophy appeared to be effective in engaging children in sports participation and in promoting potentially sustainable positive physical activity behavior.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)780-788
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Sports Science and Coaching
Volume11
Issue number6
Early online date15 Nov 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2016

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