Appears in Collections:|
Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport eTheses|
An analysis of the Impact of the Disability Sports Development Manager Post on the Regional Sports Partnership, Sport Central.|
University of Stirling|
Introduction The profile of disability sport has increased greatly in Great Britain post the Second World War. It has developed from an area which was primarily viewed as a method of treatment for those who sustained injuries during the war, into an area of sport in its own right. However, throughout this transition period a considerable number of barriers were faced by people with a disability (and are still a problem today), these will be investigated during this research. In 2005 sportscotland, the national governing body of sport in Scotland, produced a recommendation paper which proposed the implementation of an integrated sports system that would work towards achieving medal success and also improving the health of the nation. As a result, two pilot regional sports partnerships were established in order to support the recommendations made by sportscotland. This research focused upon the work implemented by one of the regional sports partnerships, Sport Central, which comprised of Falkirk, Stirling and Clackmannanshire Councils. In particular the focus was upon the work of the disability sport development manager, as disability sport was not considered to be a core component of the regional sports partnerships. Methods The methods employed during this research were semi-structured interviews and questionnaires. The research was split into two phases, with both phases utilising the key strengths of the two methods of enquiry. Phase one focused upon the school academic year of 2005-2006, whereby semi-structured interviews were conducted in order to gain qualitative data from the variety of agencies who were involved in the development, support and governance of Sport Central. Questionnaires were also used in order to gain baseline information. This was required to analyse the impact and influence of the post of the disability sport development manager within the three local authorities, and to make that impact measurable. Phase two focused upon the school academic year of 2006-2007. Once again semi-structured interviews were conducted, however the participants selected differed from 2005-2006. The reason for this was to analyse the impact of the post from an internal perspective. Questionnaires were distributed again to same participants as selected previously, in order to acquire comparable information. Results The results indicated that a significant amount of development occurred for disability sport during the research period. The percentage increase achieved by the disability sport development manager in the areas of: playground games; lunchtime clubs; after school clubs; sports development classes; events; and squads highlighted the impact that having a specific person to drive forward disability sport can potentially make, specifically in Forth Valley. Both the qualitative and quantitative data gathered illustrated the potential for significant levels of success in disability sport, in Forth Valley, through the employment of a disability sport development manager. In addition, the qualitative research illustrated the amount of different organisations that held a vested interest in the post, and supported the development of a disability sport development manager. These successful partnerships contributed towards the success achieved in Forth Valley. Discussion The establishment of the post of the disability sport development manager clearly had a significant impact on the number of quality opportunities available for people with a disability in Forth Valley. However, a key concern that was evident through the qualitative data gathered was the amount of areas of work involved within this post. The areas of work that were completed by the manager in the first year ranged from local authority development in participation programmes, through to the development of regional performance squads. This diluted approach meant that three out of the five key areas of work allocated to the post achieved success, whereas the other two areas were neglected. Furthermore, the re-development of Forth Valley Disability Sport was an area where success was also achieved. However, this area was additional to the specified five key areas of work. Another key concern that was highlighted through the quantitative data was that the majority of participants involved had a learning disability when compared to those participants with a physical or sensory disability. One of the reasons that this was considered to be a concern was due to athletes with a learning disability not yet being included within the Paralympic games. Finally, through the development of disability sport in Forth Valley it was evident that the regional plan for disability sport had developed over the two years but a growth in personnel had not occurred alongside this. Overall, a strong foundation for the future development of disability sport in Forth Valley was established by the disability sport development manager.|
Thesis or Dissertation|
School of Sport|
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