Research: Evaluation of adapted sports for people with Cerebral Palsy

One of Cerebral Palsy Sport’s main aims is to ensure that sports are inclusive for all levels of ability, particularly those with limited or restricted movement. One of the ways we have facilitated this is through developing adapted versions of mainstream sports. These include polybat, table cricket, Frame Running, frame football and most recently touch golf.

There is a strong body of evidence for the positive impact of sport and physical activity on a range of outcomes. There are well established health benefits of increased physical activity – physical activity is linked with the prevention of chronic diseases including cardiovascular disease, obesity, diabetes, cancer, mental health conditions. A number of studies have demonstrated the impact of physical activity on quality of life measures in both non-disabled and disabled populations. Promoting physically active lifestyles could play an important role in improving the physical, psychological and social wellbeing of people with Cerebral Palsy.

Disabled people are one of the most inactive groups in the general population, between 2 and 3 times less likely to participate in sport once a week than non-disabled people. People with Cerebral Palsy face a number of barriers to taking part in sport and activity. CP Sport’s adapted sports programme has been developed to tackle some of these barriers and enable more people with Cerebral Palsy to be active.

Cerebral Palsy Sport will be working with Sheffield Hallam University, Sports Industry Research Centre to conduct research over the next 10 months to complete an evaluation of the adapted sports Frame Football, Frame Running and Touch Golf on participants with Cerebral Palsy looking at 2 areas.

1. Evaluation of success and fitness for purpose.

  • Positive and negative aspects of the games
  • Who takes part and why?
  • Positioning of the offering in relation to the mainstream traditional format of the sport
  • Differences between adapted offerings, comparison

2.  Evaluating the wider impact for participants on a range of different key outcomes:

  1. Physical fitness/health
  2. Mental well-being
  3. Independence/sense of belonging
  4. Inclusive of the above – Quality of Life measures
  5. Sustained/increased participation in sport and physical activity within and outside of the specific activity.

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