Title

Barriers and Constraints for Outdoor Recreation Participation by Children with Physical Disabilities During the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Case Study from Hampton Roads, Virginia

Description/Abstract/Artist Statement

Time spent in nature contributes to intellectual, physical, social and emotional development (e.g., Asah et al., 2018; Brussoni et al., 2017; Lovelock et al., 2016). During the global COVID-19 pandemic, accessibility to outdoor experiences is desperately needed for youth of all abilities; however, children with physical disabilities, who regularly experience barriers and constraints to engagement in physical activity in the outdoors (c.f., Shields et al., 2012), may experience additional challenges in accessing these experiences. We examined the outdoor recreation experiences of children with physical disabilities (ages 6- 10) during the COVID-19 pandemic using an Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis (c.f., Howard, Katsos, & Gibson, 2019). We interviewed the parents (n = 4) of children diagnosed with physical disabilities in Hampton Roads, Virginia. Parents were asked questions designed using leisure barrier and constraint theory (c.f., Crawford et al., 1991) and responses were thematically coded first inductively and then deductively using a Martin Ginis et al.’s (2016) typology of factors related to physical activity participation among children and adults with physical disabilities. The parents shared their experiences of accessing outdoor recreation during s lockdowns; however, our findings indicate barriers experienced by children with physical disabilities existed before and were exacerbated by the pandemic. Parents in Hampton Roads struggled to find a variety of meaningful outdoor experiences for their children with disabilities, and attribute most of the barriers to institutional level factors. We share actionable steps municipalities can take to provide more inclusive access for children in outdoor and nature-based settings.

Presenting Author Name/s

Annika Cerda

Faculty Advisor/Mentor

Christopher Zajchowski

College Affiliation

College of Education & Professional Studies (Darden)

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

Disciplines

Disability Studies | Leisure Studies

Session Title

Interdisciplinary Research #6

Location

Zoom Room BB

Start Date

3-20-2021 1:00 PM

End Date

3-20-2021 1:55 PM

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Mar 20th, 1:00 PM Mar 20th, 1:55 PM

Barriers and Constraints for Outdoor Recreation Participation by Children with Physical Disabilities During the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Case Study from Hampton Roads, Virginia

Zoom Room BB

Time spent in nature contributes to intellectual, physical, social and emotional development (e.g., Asah et al., 2018; Brussoni et al., 2017; Lovelock et al., 2016). During the global COVID-19 pandemic, accessibility to outdoor experiences is desperately needed for youth of all abilities; however, children with physical disabilities, who regularly experience barriers and constraints to engagement in physical activity in the outdoors (c.f., Shields et al., 2012), may experience additional challenges in accessing these experiences. We examined the outdoor recreation experiences of children with physical disabilities (ages 6- 10) during the COVID-19 pandemic using an Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis (c.f., Howard, Katsos, & Gibson, 2019). We interviewed the parents (n = 4) of children diagnosed with physical disabilities in Hampton Roads, Virginia. Parents were asked questions designed using leisure barrier and constraint theory (c.f., Crawford et al., 1991) and responses were thematically coded first inductively and then deductively using a Martin Ginis et al.’s (2016) typology of factors related to physical activity participation among children and adults with physical disabilities. The parents shared their experiences of accessing outdoor recreation during s lockdowns; however, our findings indicate barriers experienced by children with physical disabilities existed before and were exacerbated by the pandemic. Parents in Hampton Roads struggled to find a variety of meaningful outdoor experiences for their children with disabilities, and attribute most of the barriers to institutional level factors. We share actionable steps municipalities can take to provide more inclusive access for children in outdoor and nature-based settings.