The sentient, skilled and situated of sustaining a physical activity career: Pleasurable interpretations of corporeal ambiguity

Journal article


Day, J., Burns, Jan and Weed, Mike 2021. The sentient, skilled and situated of sustaining a physical activity career: Pleasurable interpretations of corporeal ambiguity. International Review for the Sociology of Sport. https://doi.org/10.1177/10126902211053535
AuthorsDay, J., Burns, Jan and Weed, Mike
AbstractIn comparison to the natural sciences, there is a lack of empirically grounded social scientific research which addresses how people arrive at forming pleasurable interpretations of physical activity participation. Both social and natural conceptualisations of the bodily sensations evoked via physical activity involvement have also been restricted to pain and pleasure and pleasure-displeasure dualisms. Nevertheless, there is general agreement across these disciplines that pleasurable interpretations of physical activity participation encourage regular and sustained future involvement. We draw on carnal sociology to explain life history interview data from 30 varied physical activity careers to argue that corporeal experiences of being physically active are more ambiguous than existing pleasure-pain dualisms suggest. Furthermore, interpreting these ambiguous corporeal senses as pleasurable was of central importance to sustaining a prolonged physical activity career, which we argue is a carnal skill that can be learned. This skill, possessed by those interviewees with the most prolonged physical activity careers, had been acquired through becoming accustomed to the unique situated sensual ambiguities of particular physical activities, as a type of existential connoisseurship. Future research might pay more attention to the ambiguity of physical activity involvement, the carnal interpretation of which carries important consequences for the likelihood of long-term participation.
KeywordsPhysical activity; Careers
Year2021
JournalInternational Review for the Sociology of Sport
PublisherSAGE
ISSN1012-6902
1461-7218
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1177/10126902211053535
Official URLhttps://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/10126902211053535
Publication dates
Online05 Nov 2021
Publication process dates
Accepted26 Sep 2021
Deposited17 Dec 2021
Accepted author manuscript
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Weed, M. 2006. Sports tourism research: the state of the field.
Interpretive qualitative synthesis in the sport & exercise sciences: The meta-interpretation approach
Weed, M. 2006. Interpretive qualitative synthesis in the sport & exercise sciences: The meta-interpretation approach. European Journal of Sport Science. 6 (2), pp. 127-139. https://doi.org/10.1080/17461390500528576
The potential of narrative research in sports tourism
Smith, B. and Weed, M. 2007. The potential of narrative research in sports tourism. Journal of Sport & Tourism. 12 (3 & 4), pp. 249-269. https://doi.org/10.1080/14775080701737005
The pub as a virtual football fandom venue: an alternative to 'being there'?
Weed, M. 2007. The pub as a virtual football fandom venue: an alternative to 'being there'? Soccer & Society. 8 (2 & 3), pp. 399-414. https://doi.org/10.1080/14660970701224665
The impact of neuropsychological assessments on the care programmes of people who use adult mental health services
McNicholl, D., Burns, J. and Young, A. 2008. The impact of neuropsychological assessments on the care programmes of people who use adult mental health services. Clinical Psychology Forum. 187, pp. 38-41.
Investigating the psychosocial impact of anti-HIV combination therapies
Lee, K., Solts, B. and Burns, J. 2002. Investigating the psychosocial impact of anti-HIV combination therapies. AIDS Care. 14 (6), pp. 851-857. https://doi.org/10.1080/0954012021000031912
Children with HIV in the UK: a longitudinal study of adaptive and cognitive functioning
Gosling, A., Burns, J. and Hirst, F. 2004. Children with HIV in the UK: a longitudinal study of adaptive and cognitive functioning. Clinical Child Psychology and Psychiatry. 9 (1), pp. 25-37. https://doi.org/10.1177/1359104504039168
Understanding our bodies, understanding ourselves: The menstrual cycle, mental health and women with learning disabilities
Ditchfield, H. and Burns, J. 2005. Understanding our bodies, understanding ourselves: The menstrual cycle, mental health and women with learning disabilities. Learning Disability Review. 9 (4), pp. 24-32.
The dilemmas of residential care staff working with the challenging behaviour of people with learning disabilities
Whittington, A. and Burns, J. 2005. The dilemmas of residential care staff working with the challenging behaviour of people with learning disabilities. British Journal of Clinical Psychology. 44 (1), pp. 59-76. https://doi.org/10.1348/014466504X19415
A disquisition on pluralism in qualitative methods: the troublesome case of a critical narrative analysis
Goodbody, L. and Burns, J. 2011. A disquisition on pluralism in qualitative methods: the troublesome case of a critical narrative analysis. Qualitative Research in Psychology. 8 (2), pp. 170-196. https://doi.org/10.1080/14780887.2011.575288
A potential method for the interpretive synthesis of qualitative research: issues in the development of 'meta-interpretation'
Weed, M. 2008. A potential method for the interpretive synthesis of qualitative research: issues in the development of 'meta-interpretation'. International Journal of Social Research Methodology. 11 (1), pp. 13-28. https://doi.org/10.1080/13645570701401222
Why the two won't tango! Explaining the lack of integrated policies for sport and tourism in the UK
Weed, M. 2003. Why the two won't tango! Explaining the lack of integrated policies for sport and tourism in the UK. Journal of Sport Management. 17 (3), pp. 258-283.
Towards a model of cross-sectoral policy development in leisure: the case of sport and tourism
Weed, M. 2001. Towards a model of cross-sectoral policy development in leisure: the case of sport and tourism. Leisure Studies. 20 (2), pp. 125-141. https://doi.org/10.1080/02614360110049931
Sports tourism: participants, policy and providers
Weed, M. and Bull, C. 2004. Sports tourism: participants, policy and providers. Oxford Elsevier.
Ing-Ger-Land at Euro 2000: how 'handbags at 20 paces' was portrayed as a full-scale riot
Weed, M. 2001. Ing-Ger-Land at Euro 2000: how 'handbags at 20 paces' was portrayed as a full-scale riot. International Review for the Sociology of Sport. 36 (4), pp. 407-424. https://doi.org/10.1177/101269001036004003
A systematic review of evidence for the potential of live sites to generate community and public health outcomes
Weed, M., Dowse, S., Chatziefstathiou, D., Lovell, J., Mansfield, L. and Wellard, I. 2010. A systematic review of evidence for the potential of live sites to generate community and public health outcomes. Dover National Health Service.