Occupational Therapy Publications


Out‐of‐School Time Activity Participation Profiles of Children With Physical Disabilities: a Cluster Analysis

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Child: care, health and development

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Objective: To determine out‐of‐school activity participation profiles of school‐aged children with physical disabilities.

Methods: Activity participation profiles were determined by cluster analysing 427 children's responses on multiple dimensions of participation (intensity, location, companionship, enjoyment, preference) in five activity types (recreational, active physical, social, skill‐based, self‐improvement). Socio‐demographic, child, parent, family and environmental predictors of group membership were determined, along with child functioning, socio‐demographic, self‐concept and social support variables significantly associated with group membership.

Results: The cluster analysis revealed four groups, labelled Social Participators (a highly social and neighbourhood‐focused group), Broad Participators (a group of high participators who enjoy participation), Low Participators (a group with low enjoyment and weak preferences) and Recreational Participators (a group of younger children who participate in recreational activities with family members). The groups showed meaningful differences across a range of socio‐demographic, child, parent, family and environmental variables.

Conclusions: The findings support an affective and contextual view of participation, indicating the importance of motivational theory and a person–environment approach in understanding the complexity of children's out‐of‐school activity participation.

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