The purpose of this article was to explore mediating factors to pursuing a competitive swimming career as well as attributes of participation, retrospectively reported by nine retired competitive swimmers with a disability. A focus group discussion followed by a qualitative content analysis was performed. Categories of verbal comments were inductively analyzed by two trained social scientists. Trustworthiness was obtained through verbally and literally describing the proposed theme categories to the focus group participants during a feedback session, who then filled in a questionnaire depicting their agreement or disagreement with the proposed themes. The main categories generated included (a) facilitators to participation, (b) barriers to participation, and (c) participation attributions. Strongest agreement of participants with facilitator sub categories regarded (a) feeling of being an elite group, and (b) joy and fun. Participants’ retrospective accounts reflected a need for reducing barriers and enhancing facilitators and empowerment in pursuing an athletic carrier.
Author Yeshayahu Hutzler, Uri Bergman
Volume Vol 45, No 1 (2011)