A study conducted by R. Kirkby from the School of Behavioural Health Sciences, La Trobe University, considered the motives and attitudes of netball players with disabilities, particularly wheelchair netball competitiors.
The study surveyed 36 participants with a disability in wheelchair netball. The reasons given most often for becoming involved in wheelchair netball were “enjoyment” and “to meet people and/or socialise”. Common responses to the question about psychological benefits to participants with a disability included “develop self-confidence”, “regain self-esteem”, and “social benefits”.
The results indicated that the opportunity to achieve and maintain fitness was a major reason for individuals with disabilities to play wheelchair netball. Only 3 (8.3%) of the subjects with disabilities nominated “winning” as a motivation to play wheelchair netball. Despite this apparent lack of competitiveness, 7 (12.1%) of the sample responded that they would like assistance from a sport psychologist.
This study highlights the importance of participating in team sport for people with disabilities. To find out how you can become involved in disability sport, and particularly netball, contact AAA Play today!
*Kirkby, R. J. (1995), Wheelchair Netball: Motives and Attitudes of Competitors With and Without Disabilities. Australian Psychologist, 30: 109–112. doi: 10.1080/00050069508258913