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Prof Jan Burns & Dr Clare Watts Self-esteem and participation in the Special Olympics.

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Presentation on theme: "Prof Jan Burns & Dr Clare Watts Self-esteem and participation in the Special Olympics."— Presentation transcript:

1 Prof Jan Burns & Dr Clare Watts Self-esteem and participation in the Special Olympics

2 ‘In 170 countries, Special Olympics enriches the lives of people with intellectual disabilities through the power of sport.’ 3.5 million members

3 Potential life experience for people with ID Obesity/under weight Untreated sensory deficits Untreated physical illnesses e.g. diabetes Very low fitness Low health literacy Etc. Poor physical healthPoor psychological healthEconomically poor

4 Potential life experience for people with ID Poor physical health High levels anxiety High levels depression High levels serious mental health problems Increased likelihood dementia Poor psychological healthEconomically poor

5 Potential life experience for people with ID Poor physical healthPoor psychological health V Very low income High unemployment Socially isolated Educational opportunities low Poor housing etc. Economically poor

6 What we know about the impact of sport is.... Physical Fitness Disease resilience Social Social networks Increased activity Affective Alleviates anxiety & depression Increases self-esteem etc. Cognitive Increased attention Increased learning

7 Given we know that people with ID are vulnerable to all sorts of problems that research has shown can be alleviated by sports participation what does research tell us about the involvement of people with ID in sports? Under researched

8 AreaExample papers Attitudes to ID Townsend & Hassall (2007); Freudenthal,. Boyd & Tivis (2001) Intervention – behavioural psychosocial Jones, Walley, Leech, Paterson, Common, & Metcalf (2007); Ninot & Maıäno (2007); Weiss, Diamond, Demark & Lovald (2003) Intervention – physical health Moss S. (2009); Marks, Sisirak, Heller, & Wagner (2010) Health screening McCracken, Lumm & Laoide-Kemp (2011) Family Weiss & Diamond (2005) Participation Robertson & Emerson (2010); Gillespie (2008) Methodology Peterson, Peterson, Lowe & Nothwehr (2009) Reviews Hutzler & Korsensky (2010); Bartlo &. Klein (2011)

9 Research Aims Comparison study UK based Looking specifically at psychosocial differences Self-esteem Stress Social networks Life Opportunities

10 Psychosocial impact of involvement in the Special Olympics UK Special Olympics (N 40) Mencap No sport (N 34) Mencap Sport (N 20) Matched  gender  IQ (WASI)  Opportunity (Life Experiences Checklist) Sport = 1 hour+ organised activity a week

11 Measures VariableMeasure IQWASI (Wechsler, 1997) 2 subtest form OpportunityLife Experiences Checklist (Ager, 1990) Self-esteemRosenberg Self-esteem Measure (Rosenberg, 1965) StressLife Stress Inventory (Bramston & Bostock, 1994) Social NetworksSocial Support Self Report (Lunsky & Benson, 1997)

12 Findings 1. Groups were comparable, except on age where SO and Mencap Sport were younger (mean SO, 32.5; Mencap sport 30.5, No sport, 42) 2. Self esteem and LEC positively were significantly correlated 3. Multiple regression analysis - to see if group membership predicted controlling for Life Experience Checklist (opportunity)

13 Model Self Esteem Social networks Stress Life opportunities Physical and psychological well-being

14 Findings Of the three groups only the Special Olympics group was predictive of higher levels of self-esteem Suggests there is something additional to playing sport that the Special Olympics offers

15 Future Research Longitudinal studies needed to strengthen evidence base How effective exercise regimes might be adapted This troublesome thing called IQ People with Autism or Asperger’s Syndrome

16 Thank you Any questions? Acknowledgements This project was supported by a grant from SO US, volunteer research assistants, Special Olympics UK and Mencap


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