Sport rehabilitation in a young offenders institution: the "get onside" Rugby intervention, from practice to perception

Welland, Sarah (2021) Sport rehabilitation in a young offenders institution: the "get onside" Rugby intervention, from practice to perception. PhD thesis, Middlesex University. [Thesis]

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The effectiveness of using rugby as a tool for rehabilitation in a Young Offenders Institution (YOI) was investigated in three studies.
In Study 1, an intervention group (N = 33, mean age = 19.55, SD = .79) and a control group (N = 21, mean age = 19.76, SD = .89) across four cohorts of young adult males currently serving sentences at the YOI, completed the Measure of Criminal Attitudes and Associates (MCAA) instrument (Mills et al., 2002) pre and post intervention. Additionally, qualitative interviews were carried out with intervention (N = 27) and control (N = 14) groups. There was a small reduction between attitudes on MCAA measures taken before and after Rugby intervention. Analysis across the 4 cohorts showed significant differences between cohorts and time of questionnaire completion. Thematic Analysis of qualitative data indicated the programme developed pro-social values, fostered social cohesion, and provided its participants with protective factors against reoffending.

Study 2 employed a questionnaire with 12 items which was presented to student respondents (Male = 27, Female = 61, mean age = 29.78, SD = 11.75) after reading a vignette depicting an offender as having committed a violent crime (N = 44) or a non-violent crime (N = 44) to explore their perceptions of rehabilitation. Results showed female respondents demonstrated perceptions significantly more supportive of the success of the programme in the areas of reduced criminal attitudes and social and behavioural outcomes. The perceptions of vignette character convicted of violent compared to non-violent crime were not demonstrated to be significantly different. Thematic analysis of open-ended responses indicated the programme was perceived to be a positive initiative that promotes health and wellbeing and provides a community and sense of belonging.

Study 3 formed an Interpretative Phenomenological case study with an ex-prisoner. Semi-structured interview provided an insight into the development and formation of his personal identity in the prison and beyond, and the understanding of the impact of this specific intervention programme.

Findings from this thesis present a novel contribution to prison sport literature, by placing prisoners’ experiences at the heart of the research process. Implications are discussed and recommendations made in terms of prison-based sport rehabilitation for researchers and policy makers.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Sustainable Development Goals:
Research Areas: A. > School of Science and Technology > Psychology
B. > Theses
Item ID: 35269
Depositing User: Brigitte Joerg
Date Deposited: 16 Aug 2022 09:48
Last Modified: 29 Nov 2022 17:40

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