Date of Award

11-29-2016

Degree Name

MSEd in Physical Education

Department

Kinesiology, Sport Studies and Physical Education

Abstract

Children with disabilities are more likely to be sedentary in comparison to their typically developing peers. This especially occurs with children who are diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) as many of these individuals show impairments in motor and physical functioning. Research has shown that children with ASD have been found to be less physically active in an after-school setting in comparison to their peers of typical development. There are several categories of barriers and facilitators impacting the after-school physical activity levels of children with ASD. Previous research separates these barriers and facilitators into four categories including: interpersonal, intrapersonal, physical, and community/institutional. To date, several research studies have assessed the barriers and facilitators children with ASD encounter when participating in after-school physical activity, but there has been no attempt by researchers to prioritize their importance. Therefore, the purpose of this project was to synthesize relevant literature to prioritize the importance of the known barriers and facilitators of after-school physical activity participation for children with ASD. Coded data from 10 research articles were used to list all the known barriers and/or facilitators and both were prioritized by counting the number of times they were cited in the original literature. The most frequently cited categories of barriers in the literature were intrapersonal, followed by interpersonal, physical, and community/ institutional. The most frequently cited categories of facilitators were interpersonal, followed by physical, intrapersonal, and community/institutional.

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