The Effects Of Physical Activity And Self-Perception In Disabled Children

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Introduction Physical Activity and Self-Perception in Disabled Children The current epidemic of obesity associated with physical inactivity is a health care concern for all children, including those with disabilities. Numerous research studies have examined the prevalence and health benefits of physical activity in children with and without disabilities indicating that children with disabilities participate in less physical activity than typically developed children, therefore, disabled children have less opportunity of gaining the health benefits from a physically active lifestyle (Janseen & LeBlanc, 2010). Studies found that regular participation in social, recreational, or leisure physical activity yields to improvements in physical …show more content…
Additionally, sports participation enhances the psychological well- being of children with disabilities by the opportunities to form friendships, express creativity, develop a self-identity, and foster meaning and purpose in life. Participation in regular physical activity can foster independence, coping abilities, competitiveness, and teamwork among children with disabilities (Murphy & Carbone, 2008). Compared to inactive disabled children, children with a physically active lifestyle have an overall heightened self-perception including the types of self-perceptions: self-efficacy, self-esteem, self-concept, and body image (Solish et al., …show more content…
In other words, self-concept refers to how one sees abs defines oneself. Children with intellectual delays are particularly prone to developing negative self-concepts. A research examined how physical activity through participation in Special Olympics impacted the self-concept of children with disabilities. The study found that the components that influence the self-concept are the length of time in the organization, physical skill development, the promotion of accomplishment, and the enhancement of social interactions, social skills, and friendship (Crawford et al., 2015).
Body image Body image reflects how one thinks, feels, and acts toward one’s body, which can be confused with physical self-concept, or the judgment about the body’s appearance and abilities. Evaluations of ideal body image, which refers to how one thinks the body should look and function, in children with developmental disabilities have been found to be more negative than matched peers without delays (Weiss et al., 2003). This can be because of the higher prevalence of overweight and obesity found in children with disabilities than typically developed children.

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