The primary objective of the study was recognition of the forms of sports and recreational activities of the disabled living in the regions of Rzeszów, Lublin and Białystok, and determination of the benefits drawn by them from participation in these activities. A total number of 750 were examined. The representative group was selected by the stratified random sampling method. The study was conducted by the method of a diagnostic survey. Research material was collected by means of mutually supplementary research techniques: questionnaire, interview, observation, and analysis of documentation.
A detailed analysis of the results obtained allowed the presumption that more than half of the people with disabilities from the eastern regions of Poland participate in sports-recreational activities, with the largest number of respondents with a mild degree of disability.
The majority of respondents approach their participation in sports-recreational activities not simply as a form of therapeutic rehabilitation. Respondents most frequently participated in walks, marches, and rehabilitation gymnastics. The largest percentage of respondents had never participated in hydrobics, horseback riding, hippotherapy, and swimming.
A considerable number of the respondents would like to participate in - apart from walks, marches, and rehabilitation gymnastics - team games and swimming. According to the respondents’ opinions, forms of sports-recreational activities that are most recommended with respect to the degree and type of disability are: rehabilitation gymnastics, walks, marches, and swimming.
Due to the participation in sports-recreational and tourism activities, those with disabilities have a good general well being, their state of health improves, they make new acquaintances and social contacts, make new friends, and elevate their physical efficacy and endurance. The respondents also indicated a change from sedentary lifestyle as well as satisfaction from overcoming both imperfections of own body and anxiety resulting from disability.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.