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Exploring disordered eating and embodiment in male distance runners through visual narrative methods

Busanich, Rebecca; McGannon, Kerry R.; Schinke, Robert J.

Qualitative research in sport, exercise and health. Volume 8:Issue 1 (2016); pp 95-112 -- Taylor & Francis

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  • Title:
    Exploring disordered eating and embodiment in male distance runners through visual narrative methods
  • Author: Busanich, Rebecca;
    McGannon, Kerry R.;
    Schinke, Robert J.
  • Found In: Qualitative research in sport, exercise and health. Volume 8:Issue 1 (2016); pp 95-112
  • Journal Title: Qualitative research in sport, exercise and health
  • Subjects: Exercise--Research--Methodology--Periodicals; Health--Research--Methodology--Periodicals; Sports sciences--Research--Methodology--Periodicals; narratives--visual methods--gender--body--food--men--distance running; Dewey: 613.71
  • Rights: legaldeposit
  • Publication Details: Taylor & Francis
  • Abstract: Abstract :

    While researchers in sport and exercise psychology have provided new insight into the sociocultural construction of disordered eating and the complexity of athletes' embodied experiences in recent years, our knowledge of these experiences in male athletes remains limited and is confined by verbal expression (e.g. interviews and analyses of the spoken word). Thus, we sought to further explore the embodied and disordered eating experiences of male distance runners through the use of visual narrative methods (i.e. drawing or constructing a visual story/collage), allowing participants to creatively express their storied relationship with running, their bodies and food. Participants included four competitive male distance runners. A visual thematic and dialogic/performance analysis was performed on all four visual narratives. All of the runners drew upon dominant cultural images, messages and texts to create their visual narratives. Within the visual stories, two emerging narratives, a transformative narrative and a rollercoaster narrative, were identified. These narratives were woven together with a performance narrative and gendered meanings around the body, food and exercise to frame the runners' embodied and disordered eating experiences. This study extends previous literature on the performance narrative and the construction of meaning around the body, food and exercise for male athletes. Practical implications include the need to provide male athletes with narratives outside of those (re)produced through the sport-exercise-media complex, allowing for more diverse meaning-making processes and leading to more positive embodied experiences.


  • Identifier: System Number: LDEAvdc_100031336879.0x000001; Journal ISSN: 2159-676X; 10.1080/2159676X.2015.1028093
  • Publication Date: 2016
  • Physical Description: Electronic
  • Shelfmark(s): ELD Digital store

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