Effects of a sport programme (Box'Tag®) on disadvantaged youth participants

Terry, Peter C. and Hahn, Allan and Simjanovic, Melina (2014) Effects of a sport programme (Box'Tag®) on disadvantaged youth participants. International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 12 (3). pp. 258-272. ISSN 1612-197X


There is evidence that appropriately structured sport programmes can help young people to build positive life skills while also improving their physical fitness and psychological well-being. Disadvantaged and marginalised young people have relatively low rates of participation in sport, and designing programmes that attract and retain them presents a major challenge. Some success has been reported for programmes involving boxing, but such programmes entail a high potential for injury. The present study assessed the effects of a modified, low-risk form of boxing, known as Box'Tag®, on disadvantaged 11-12-year-olds. Volunteer Grade 7 students (N = 51) participated in an eight-week programmes of two to three sessions per week. Using a matched-pair design to control for effects of gender and risk of social disengagement (at-risk/not-at-risk), participants were assigned to either the Box'Tag® intervention or a control condition, in the form of a largely non-physical social skills programmes called Rock and Water. To assess aspects of psychological well-being, the Brunel Mood Scale (BRUMS) and the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) were administered at baseline (T1), at 4 weeks (T2), at 8 weeks (T3), and a follow-up at 12 weeks (T4). Participants completed a shuttle run and other fitness tests at T1 and T3. Qualitative feedback from participants (n = 36) was gathered via open-ended questions at T3. No significant between-group differences were found for BRUMS or SDQ scores, although both the intervention and control groups reported significant reductions in total difficulties scores from T1 to T2 and the not-at-risk members of the Box'Tag® group reported the most positive trends for total mood disturbance from T1 to T2. The Box'Tag® group showed significant improvement in shuttle run performance from T1 to T3, whereas the control group showed no improvement. Programme perceptions were more positive for Box'Tag® participants than for the control group, and behavioural benefits were found for both programmes. Overall, the Box'Tag® programme appealed to children of both sexes, engaged children at risk of social disengagement, had positive effects on aerobic fitness, and yielded behavioural benefits for some participants.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: © 2014 International Society of Sport Psychology. Permanent restricted access to published version in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - No Department (1 Jul 2013 -)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - No Department (1 Jul 2013 -)
Date Deposited: 07 Aug 2014 06:07
Last Modified: 04 Jul 2016 06:32
Uncontrolled Keywords: Box'Tag®; disadvantage; mood; rock and water; shuttle run; youth
Fields of Research (2008): 17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170114 Sport and Exercise Psychology
17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170113 Social and Community Psychology
16 Studies in Human Society > 1608 Sociology > 160806 Social Theory
Fields of Research (2020): 52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5201 Applied and developmental psychology > 520107 Sport and exercise psychology
52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5205 Social and personality psychology > 520599 Social and personality psychology not elsewhere classified
44 HUMAN SOCIETY > 4410 Sociology > 441005 Social theory
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): C Society > 94 Law, Politics and Community Services > 9401 Community Service (excl. Work) > 940116 Social Class and Inequalities
Identification Number or DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/1612197X.2014.880263
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/25730

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