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Authored by: Andy Smith

Routledge Handbook of Youth Sport

Print publication date:  January  2016
Online publication date:  January  2016

Print ISBN: 9780415840033
eBook ISBN: 9780203795002
Adobe ISBN: 9781134469932


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In the last two decades, a number of book-length attempts have been made to understand the major patterns and trends in sport participation across the world, whether among whole populations (e.g. Da Costa and Miragaya 2002), or among distinct groups of national populations such as young people (e.g. De Knop et al. 1996). Nicholson et al. (2011) have also provided an important corrective to the dominance in the literature of analyses of elite sport policy by examining the relative success of national sport participation policies. To these can be added countless journal articles that have examined sport participation in a myriad of local, national and international contexts, and which have focused on different target groups, on individual and combinations of sports, and on a whole range of predictors of sport participation. The focus of Section 2 in this Handbook, however, is on youth and the major patterns and trends that are identifiable from their engagement in sport and physical activity in various countries around the world.

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