Exploring common stressors in physical education

Tudor, K., Sarkar, M. ORCID: 0000-0002-8338-8500 and Spray, C., 2019. Exploring common stressors in physical education. European Physical Education Review, 25 (3), pp. 675-690. ISSN 1356-336X

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Daily stressors, or hassles, refer to the everyday environmental demands that constitute a threat or challenge, or exceed an individual’s biological or psychological capacities (Cohen et al., 1995). Increasing evidence suggests that daily stressors have a significant impact on adolescents’ educational outcomes, for example, performance, wellbeing and negative attitudes toward school, however there is limited research examining the concept of common stressors in PE lessons. As early-adolescence is a developmental period associated with decreased engagement in PE, it is important to identify the environmental stressors that may be associated with increased disengagement. The study comprised 54 secondary school students and six PE teachers from five schools in the English Midlands. Semi-structured focus groups were conducted and a thematic analysis was applied to interview transcripts. Three higher order themes were identified from the data: the social environment, the physical and organisational environment, and the performance environment. Common stressors within the social environment included, interpersonal transactions between peers, differences in effort levels during PE, and working outside one’s peer group. Stressors within the physical and organisational environment consisted of, environmental situations within the changing facilities and the availability of activities. Finally, performance environment stressors included, situations involving the difficult acquisition of physical skills, and situations where physical appearance and physical competencies were exposed. The study extends previous findings by identifying potentially threatening and frustrating, environmental demands that have not been identified in the previous literature. The current study is the first to explore the typical stressors that are experienced by students in PE.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: European Physical Education Review
Creators: Tudor, K., Sarkar, M. and Spray, C.
Publisher: Sage
Date: 2019
Volume: 25
Number: 3
ISSN: 1356-336X
Divisions: Schools > School of Science and Technology
Record created by: Jonathan Gallacher
Date Added: 16 Mar 2018 15:44
Last Modified: 05 Jul 2019 10:02
URI: https://irep.ntu.ac.uk/id/eprint/33012

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