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Presentation of self, impression management and the period: A qualitative investigation of physically active women’s experiences in sport and exercise

Thomas, LB, Kolic, P, Morse, C and Hicks, K (2022) Presentation of self, impression management and the period: A qualitative investigation of physically active women’s experiences in sport and exercise. Journal of Applied Sport Psychology. ISSN 1041-3200

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Abstract

The menstrual cycle is an important biological process that can have implications for women’s participation in activities of daily life. The purpose of this qualitative study was to understand women’s experiences, interactions, and perceptions of sport and exercise participation throughout the menstrual cycle. Five focus groups with 25 physically active women were conducted to investigate women’s perceptions of their menstrual cycle, their thoughts, feelings, and actions in sport and exercise environments throughout the menstrual cycle. The dramaturgical writings of Goffman (1956, 1959, 1967) were used to understand women’s self presentation and experiences of interactional dynamics in sport and exercise environments. The findings highlight that the period was the most impactful aspect of the menstrual cycle on physically active women’s experiences of sport and exercise participation. The results explore strategies that the women adopted to manage their appearance, concerns that informed women’s decision-making processes, and the women’s purposeful impression management when undertaking sport and exercise during their period, particularly in interactions with male sport coaches. The findings emphasise the importance of unpacking the often-implicit norms and expectations associated with the period in order to normalise dialogues with practitioners (e.g., coaches) and support women’s continued participation in sport and exercise throughout the menstrual cycle.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an Accepted Manuscript version of the following article, accepted for publication in Journal of Applied Sport Psychology. Petra Kolić, Laura Thomas, Christopher I. Morse & Kirsty M. Hicks (2022) Presentation of self, impression management and the period: A qualitative investigation of physically active women’s experiences in sport and exercise, Journal of Applied Sport Psychology, DOI: 10.1080/10413200.2022.2032479. It is deposited under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/), which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Uncontrolled Keywords: 1106 Human Movement and Sports Sciences, 1701 Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC1200 Sports Medicine
Divisions: Sport & Exercise Sciences
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Date Deposited: 12 Jan 2022 11:56
Last Modified: 24 Feb 2022 11:00
DOI or Identification number: 10.1080/10413200.2022.2032479
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/16036

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