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Monday, October 8 • 3:00pm - 3:10pm
Oral 3, Talk 2. "A Qualitative Investigation of Perceived Barriers to and Enablers of Sport Participation for Young People with First Episode Psychosis"

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Lauren Brooke1, Daniel Gucciardi1, Ashleigh Lin2, Nikos Ntoumanis3; 1School of Physiotherapy and Exercise Science, Curtin University, 2Telethon Kids Institute, The University of Western Australia, Perth, WA, 3School of Psychology, Curtin University
Dynamic interventions that provide opportunities for physical activity, social interaction, and skill development are important for the functional recovery of young people with first-episode psychosis (FEP). As such, sport (encompassing physical activity, group dynamics, and physical and life-skill development) is an ideal intervention platform for this population, yet has been rarely utilised in this context. The aim of this study was to improve our knowledge of the perceived barriers and enablers of sport participation for young people (aged 16-25) presenting with FEP. We conducted semi-structured interviews and focus groups with young people with FEP (n=10) and their clinicians (n=33). Questions focused on barriers and facilitators (e.g., psychological, environmental, logistical) to participation in a sport program designed specifically for young people with FEP, as well as general feedback on program design options. A thematic analysis of the transcribed interviews and focus groups revealed five predominant themes across both clinicians and young people: 1) barriers (e.g., anxiety, amotivation), 2) enablers (e.g., others’ support, close proximity), 3) perceived benefits (e.g., sense of belonging, distraction), 4) psychological safety (e.g., clinical support, understanding individual mental health history), and 5) program design recommendations (e.g., sport preferences). General reactions of both the clinicians and young people to the idea of a sport program were supportive, yet the clinicians were also cautionary in regards to the needs of the specific population and the challenges of engagement. The results provide valuable insight into how to bring sport to this population in a way that is engaging, appropriate, and safe.


Monday October 8, 2018 3:00pm - 3:10pm EDT
St. George AB Westin Copley Place, third floor