Physical fitness of individuals with intellectual disability who have Special Olympics experience
Rintala, P., Asunta, P., Lahti, J., & Loovis, E. M. (2016). Physical fitness of individuals with intellectual disability who have Special Olympics experience. European Journal of Adapted Physical Activity, 9(2), 13-19. https://doi.org/10.5507/euj.2016.006
Published inEuropean Journal of Adapted Physical Activity
© the Authors & European Journal of Adapted Physical Activity, 2017. This is an open access article published by Evropská federace aplikovaných pohybových aktivit.
Physical fitness of individuals with intellectual disability (ID) is low compared to those without ID. Part of the mission of Special Olympics is to develop physical fitness. However, little is known about fitness levels of Special Olympics athletes. This study examined the fitness level of individuals who participated in Nordic Special Olympics Games 2008 in Finland. The sample consisted of 59 Special Olympics athletes (44 men, 15 women, age 16–45) whose fitness scores were compared to INAS-athletes (International Association of Sport for para-athletes with ID) and Finnish non-athletic individuals with ID. The fitness battery consisted of 8 items: BMI, sit-and-reach test, stork stand, sit up, standing long jump, hand grip, shuttle run, and 1 mile/2 km walk test. BMI values were in the range of the nondisabled population. All other fitness values were below the means of the INAS-athletes, but above the Finnish non-athletes. Based on this data which is supported by the existing literature, the level of fitness of Special Olympics athletes needs further scrutiny. Given that the participants were Special Olympics athletes, who trained regularly, the low fitness level is alarming. Therefore, a closer examination of the contents of physical fitness training programs in Special Olympics is warranted. ...
PublisherEvropská federace aplikovaných pohybových aktivit
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