Recreation and Sport Studies

Studying, Experiencing and Facilitating Kinesiology, Recreation and Sport through Wellness and Physical Activity


Why it’s time to legislate physical activity for our kids

As a graduating undergraduate in RSS, an article I would recommend reading is:

We all know that today’s kids are not active enough and apparently this is a concern of ours. Research shows that even through the continuous efforts of health, sport and recreation professionals kids are still inactive.


“The 2014 Active Healthy Kids Canada report card tells us that only 7 per cent of Canadian kids ages 5-11 years are active enough to meets Canada’s basic daily physical-activity guidelines.”

The facilities are available, the outdoor space is available, and there is more organized sport and recreation opportunities than ever before in our history. In fact, 75% of Canadian children are in an organized sport. The report card tells us that it is our culture of convenience has lead to Canadians moving less. Our country value efficiency, we want to do more in less time and it has a direct coloration with the promotion of children’s health. We do not value active transportation, healthy food preparation methods or free play, and when we do see these types of behaviours, we make a mockery of it. For anything to change, this mentality that society has adopted needs to change.


What can we as RSS professionals do? We cannot force parents to make their children active in their spare time. We can, however, work collectively, drawing on our resources to mandate and legislate physical activity in schools. It takes planning and political will. Physical activity should be a public-health priority (like obesity or cardiovascular disease) and the creation of compressive programs that can serve every Canadian child need to be enacted.

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Intellectual Disabilities and Physical Activity


Intellectual disability is a disability characterized by significant limitations in both intellectual functioning and in adaptive behavior, which covers many everyday social and practical skills. This disability originates before the age of 18. (AAIDD, 2015)

Question: How do we make children that have an intellectual disability such as autism or Down Syndrome more active?

Answer: There is no quick fix, no one perfect solution. Every child and every family is different and has different likes and different resources. A child with an intellectual disability may have more barriers, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t still possible for them to be active, and it doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t try and give them every opportunity possible for them to get moving

As future RSS professionals we came up with some of the possible barriers to why children with intellectual disabilities are more inactive. These range anywhere from being less social to more passive to having the same barriers that typically developing children face such as time or lack of availability.

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The Relationship between Youth Sport Specialization and Involvement in Sport and Physical Activity in Young Adulthood

 As a graduating undergraduate in RSS, an article I would recommend reading is:

Russell, W. D., & Limle, A. N. (2013). The relationship between youth sport specialization and involvement in sport and physical activity in young adulthood. Journal of Sport Behavior, 36(1), 82-98. 

I chose this article because I believe that it is an important study as to how early sport specialization affects involvement in recreation and sport in young adults. This study indicated that when a child specializes early, they grow up without complete motor skill development, as well as psychological development.

When a child specializes early, as they grow up, there could be less intrinsic motivation to participate. During our younger years, there are trophies for participation, most valuable player, and least penalized player. Once participants hit young adulthood, unless your involved in high performance athletics, those awards become few and far between. Therefore as the desire for extrinsic rewards grows and the time for receiving them passes, the likelihood of maintain participation in the sports diminishes.

Recreation and sport is meant as a positive influence; it often keeps children and adolescents out of situations that could be harmful to their development. It also instills a sense of commitment and hard work that a developing child requires to maintain a lasting involvement and enjoyment of sport, as well as the many skills and traits that can be developed and utilized throughout their lives

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Seniors and Physical Activity

As of 2012, about 21% of Canadians were over the age of 60. By 2030, it is projected to rise to 28.5% and by 2050, it will exceed 31%. This means that by mid-century, approximately a third of Canadians will be over the age of 60. In ten years time, there will be over one billion seniors worldwide. Soon seniors will outnumber the amount of children under the age of 15. This is also not solely a First and Second world issue. In over three decades, Africa will be home to 10% of the world’s seniors.

Seniors have much to offer the young of today. They are full of knowledge and wisdom that could transfer to further the development of today’s youth. Therefore we need to ensure that they are properly taken care of for the remainder of their years through physical activity and socialization.

Healthy seniors

Physical activity is key for seniors. Due to their ageing physical bodies, they have a greater likelihood for cardiovascular diseases, as well as arthritis, diabetes, hypertension, osteoporosis and other chronic diseases. Along with the physical deterioration, there are also the issues they face when it comes to mental health. Seniors are at a higher risk for depression, anxiety, and loneliness. With the typical stresses of everyday life, seniors also may lose their ability to live independently because they may suffered from limited mobility, chronic pain, frailty, along with other physical problems. Seniors also experience events such as bereavement, a drop in socioeconomic status with retirement, or a disability. All of these can result in isolation, loss of independence, loneliness and psychological distress.

Socialization is also an important part of keeping seniors healthy and well. Socializing is a good way to ensure that loneliness is “kept at bay”. This also helps to alleviate feelings such as depression and anxiety. Making sure they have a class that they get involved in or making sure they get outside and go for a walk will be key to keeping seniors well.

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