Team Spirit: The creation of a
physical activity program for First
   Nations and Métis Youth.
             Serene Smyth
 ...
Acknowledgements
• Co-authors: Humbert ML, Lavallee J,
  Chad, KE.

• Institute of Aboriginal Peoples’ Health

• The Canad...
The importance of physical activity
Short term benefits for               Long term benefits include
youth who are active ...
Sports and Health
A 3% increase in sport and recreation participation could
  save Canadian tax payers $41 million in annu...
First Nations and Métis youth
          involvement in sport.
• In Canada 67% of urban Aboriginal children and youth
  pla...
Why create a physical activity
program for First Nations and Métis
              youth?

• Aboriginal youth have higher ra...
Why create a physical activity
program for First Nations and Métis
              youth?
• Sport and recreation play a
  po...
Urban Aboriginal Youth
• More than half of Aboriginal people reside in urban areas.

• The urban Aboriginal population in ...
Aboriginal youth in Saskatoon

    • Saskatoon has the second highest
      representation of Aboriginal people in Canada
...
Team Spirit: Aboriginal Girls in
                  Sport
• National initiative to increase community
  sport opportunities...
“Hoops and Dreams” Team Spirit
            Saskatoon
Objectives:

• Address the gap in sport
  opportunities available for...
Method
Participatory Action Research
      Plan, Act, Observe, Reflect




                         Focus group discussion...
Findings for practice and delivery

• Barriers preventing participation for
  many young Aboriginal Women
  include:

• la...
Program Successes
 Providing transportation and daycare.

“There are a lot of young mothers who aren’t able to do stuff b...
Program Successes
 Social interaction

“The best part in participating is meeting new
  people, playing basketball and ju...
Program Successes
• Quality coaching and mentoring



“Jacqui is a role model; she is really
  good at basketball.”

“I li...
Program Successes
• Competition



• “The best part was the games, and I like practices. I really
  like sports.”
Program Successes
• Learning basic sport skills


“My skills were better at the end. I just wanna play more
 basketball no...
Program Successes
• Being in a respectful environment



“Overall it is most important to be
 respected, not just on a tea...
Program Successes
• Increased Pride and confidence




“I felt proud because we were the only
  Aboriginal team. I felt it...
External Facilitator
• Flexibility of the minor basketball league on
  ages of players and roster alterations
Future Program Planning
 “Some girls don’t even know about the activities that go on and if they do they don’t
 know who t...
Summary
• Sport and physical activity are crucial for optimal health.

• Sport has long been recognized by Aboriginal peop...
Team Spirit:The creation of a physical activity program for First Nations and Métis Youth.
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Team Spirit:The creation of a physical activity program for First Nations and Métis Youth.

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Serene Smyth
University of Saskatchewan

NAHO 2009 National Conference
Co-authors: HumbertML, LavalleeJ, Chad, KE.
InstituteofAboriginal Peoples’ Health
The Canadian Institutes of Health Research.
Canadian Association for the Advancement of Women in Sport and Physical Activity (CAAWS)

Published in: Health & Medicine
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Team Spirit:The creation of a physical activity program for First Nations and Métis Youth.

  1. 1. Team Spirit: The creation of a physical activity program for First Nations and Métis Youth. Serene Smyth University of Saskatchewan
  2. 2. Acknowledgements • Co-authors: Humbert ML, Lavallee J, Chad, KE. • Institute of Aboriginal Peoples’ Health • The Canadian Institutes of Health Research. • Canadian Association for the Advancement of Women in Sport and Physical Activity (CAAWS)
  3. 3. The importance of physical activity Short term benefits for Long term benefits include youth who are active decreased risk of several chronic are: condition including: – Increased self esteem – Coronary heart disease – Increased perceived physical – Hypertension competencies – Increased ability to cope with – Obesity mental stress – Type II diabetes – Greater chances of pursuing healthier lifestyle – Osteoporosis – Certain cancers
  4. 4. Sports and Health A 3% increase in sport and recreation participation could save Canadian tax payers $41 million in annual health care costs. (Sport BC, 2009)
  5. 5. First Nations and Métis youth involvement in sport. • In Canada 67% of urban Aboriginal children and youth play sports one or more times a week. • 63% of Aboriginal youth participate in competitive sports. (RHS 2002/2003)
  6. 6. Why create a physical activity program for First Nations and Métis youth? • Aboriginal youth have higher rates of overweight and obesity than non-Aboriginal youth (Willows, 2005) • The trend towards increased obesity among Aboriginal youth is problematic because it is associated with numerous chronic conditions such as type 2 diabetes (T2D), which are further linked with increased morbidity and mortality (Kumanyika & Grier, 2006)
  7. 7. Why create a physical activity program for First Nations and Métis youth? • Sport and recreation play a positive role in strengthening the emotional, mental, physical and spiritual aspects of life. • Sport is a primary means for community wellness: as preventative medicine for the social dilemma that Aboriginal youth face. (Aboriginal Sport Circle, 1998)
  8. 8. Urban Aboriginal Youth • More than half of Aboriginal people reside in urban areas. • The urban Aboriginal population in Canada is very young. (Statistics Canada, 2008)
  9. 9. Aboriginal youth in Saskatoon • Saskatoon has the second highest representation of Aboriginal people in Canada at 9% of our population. • The 2006 census showed that half of the Aboriginal population in Saskatoon is under age 24. (StatisticsCanada, 2008)
  10. 10. Team Spirit: Aboriginal Girls in Sport • National initiative to increase community sport opportunities for Aboriginal girls and young women • Partnership between Canadian Association for the Advancement of Women and Sport and Physical Activity (CAAWS) and the Aboriginal Sport Circle • Funded via Sport Canada’s Sport Participation Development Program
  11. 11. “Hoops and Dreams” Team Spirit Saskatoon Objectives: • Address the gap in sport opportunities available for young Aboriginal women in Saskatoon • Improve health and well-being • Empower young Aboriginal women to make healthy choices • Promote leadership in their community • Identify the perceived barriers and facilitators to sport participation
  12. 12. Method Participatory Action Research Plan, Act, Observe, Reflect Focus group discussions One on one Interviews Informal Conversations
  13. 13. Findings for practice and delivery • Barriers preventing participation for many young Aboriginal Women include: • lack of childcare, • clothing, • food, • communication, • transportation (Canadian Heritage, 2005)
  14. 14. Program Successes  Providing transportation and daycare. “There are a lot of young mothers who aren’t able to do stuff because of no daycare” “I felt my baby was safe, being in the same building close to me” “At Team Spirit they have daycare, that’s pretty cool. I think if they didn’t have daycare the 3 moms wouldn’t be on the team.”
  15. 15. Program Successes  Social interaction “The best part in participating is meeting new people, playing basketball and just getting active.” “I just like being on the team and being together with the girls and all interested in one thing.” “It’s just I like playing basketball. I’m not good, but I like playing with my friends”
  16. 16. Program Successes • Quality coaching and mentoring “Jacqui is a role model; she is really good at basketball.” “I like you guys as coaches. I like how you guys push me. I wish we had more practices.”
  17. 17. Program Successes • Competition • “The best part was the games, and I like practices. I really like sports.”
  18. 18. Program Successes • Learning basic sport skills “My skills were better at the end. I just wanna play more basketball now.” “I just didn’t know how to use the ball. But I guess it worked, practicing and stuff.”
  19. 19. Program Successes • Being in a respectful environment “Overall it is most important to be respected, not just on a team but in life. It’s important for everybody to respect one another and then you feel more welcomed. “
  20. 20. Program Successes • Increased Pride and confidence “I felt proud because we were the only Aboriginal team. I felt it when we won…really happy and proud.”
  21. 21. External Facilitator • Flexibility of the minor basketball league on ages of players and roster alterations
  22. 22. Future Program Planning “Some girls don’t even know about the activities that go on and if they do they don’t know who to talk to about it.” • Communication and advertisement about activities and sports • Longer season or more programs
  23. 23. Summary • Sport and physical activity are crucial for optimal health. • Sport has long been recognized by Aboriginal people as a means to combat some of the negative factors affecting youth. • The development of successful sport and physical activity program depends on addressing barriers specific to local youth involvement. • Funding can be a facilitator if used appropriately. • Many youth desire more opportunities to be in structured programs.
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