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Parents' perceptions and concerns about physical activity participation among adolescents with autism spectrum disorder
Örebro University, School of Health Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9074-6559
Örebro University, Örebro, Sweden; University of Gävle, Gävle, Sweden.
Örebro University, School of Health Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-6703-7575
2020 (English)In: Autism, ISSN 1362-3613, E-ISSN 1461-7005, Vol. 24, no 8, p. 2243-2255, article id 1362361320942092Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The parents of adolescents with autism spectrum disorder have a vital and proactive role in encouraging healthy physical activity habits, and they possess important knowledge about the adolescents' needs when it comes to enhancing participation in physical activity. But promoting healthy physical activity habits in adolescents can be difficult. The purpose of this study was thus to describe parents' perceptions of their adolescent child's participation in physical activity and to describe the parental role in promoting such participation. Twenty-eight parents of adolescents aged 12-16 years with autism spectrum disorder were interviewed. The interviews were analyzed using an inductive content analysis approach. The parents described how challenging participation in physical activities could be for their adolescents. Despite this, they wanted to see their children participate more in physical activity but found the promotion of physical activity to be an overwhelming task that was difficult to cope with on their own. The results reveal a need for support and collaborative efforts among different actors to give these issues increased priority in order to promote the adolescents' physical activity participation. Lay abstract What is already known about the topic?The parents of adolescents with autism spectrum disorder have a vital and proactive role in encouraging healthy physical activity habits. But promoting healthy physical activity habits in adolescents can be difficult. The purpose of this study was thus to describe the parental perceptions of their adolescent child's participation in physical activity and to describe the parental role in promoting such participation. Twenty-eight parents of adolescents aged 12-16 years with autism spectrum disorder were interviewed. What this paper adds?The parents described how challenging participation in physical activities could be for their adolescents. Despite this, they wanted to see their children participate more in physical activity but found the promotion of physical activity to be an overwhelming task that was difficult to cope with on their own. Implications for practice, research, or policy.The results reveal a need for support and collaborative efforts among different actors to give these issues increased priority in order to promote the adolescents' physical activity participation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sage Publications, 2020. Vol. 24, no 8, p. 2243-2255, article id 1362361320942092
Keywords [en]
adolescent, autism spectrum disorder, family, parent, participation, physical activity
National Category
Psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-85046DOI: 10.1177/1362361320942092ISI: 000552729100001PubMedID: 32713182Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85088439335OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-85046DiVA, id: diva2:1461652
Note

Funding Agency:

Region Örebro County, Sweden

Available from: 2020-08-27 Created: 2020-08-27 Last updated: 2022-11-02Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Participation in physical activity among adolescents with autism spectrum disorder: the perspectives of adolescents, parents and professionals
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Participation in physical activity among adolescents with autism spectrum disorder: the perspectives of adolescents, parents and professionals
2022 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Findings from previous research show generally lower levels of physical activity (PA) among adolescents with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The reasons for the low PA participation are complex and depend on several factors, often described as barriers to PA. However, the overall picture concerning participation in PA among adolescents with ASD remains incomplete, as it lacks the adolescents’ own perspectives. The mission to promote healthy PA habits is shared by several actors, including the family or parents and the education, health and municipal services. In order to understand and comprehensively describe these adolescents’ PA participation, different PA contexts and perspectives need to be included. The overall aim of this thesis was therefore to study participation in PA among adolescents with ASD from the adolescents’ (study I), parents’ (study II) and professionals’ (study III) perspectives. The findings from study I showed a conditional participation behaviour in PA among adolescents with ASD. In studies II and III, the results revealed a need to give PA issues increased priority and support through collaborative efforts. Complementary roles are needed to promote participation in PA. In study IV, the feasibility of using a Q-sort tool to map conditions for participation in PA was investigated. The results showed that Q-sort is a feasible method that can be used to offer tailored support according to the adolescents’ individual-specific conditions for participation. In conclusion, a condition-controlled behaviour when participating in PA was described in all four studies. When promoting participation in PA, these individual-specific conditions for participation need to be recognized and tailored support offered. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Örebro: Örebro University, 2022. p. 101
Series
Studies from The Swedish Institute for Disability Research, ISSN 1650-1128 ; 109
Keywords
Autism spectrum disorder, adolescent, child, physical activity, physical education, participation, socio-ecological model
National Category
Other Health Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-99420 (URN)9789175294612 (ISBN)
Public defence
2022-09-16, Örebro universitet, Campus USÖ, hörsal C1, Södra Grev Rosengatan 32, Örebro, 09:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2022-06-07 Created: 2022-06-07 Last updated: 2022-11-02Bibliographically approved

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Arnell, SusannLundqvist, Lars-Olov

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