Competing for Life: Older People. Sport and Ageing

Research output: Book/ReportBook


Why do older people compete in physically demanding sports? Competing in sport to win, achieve a personal best and push the body to its limit are practices commonly tied to the young and robust. Older people are expected to play sport to have fun, make friends and keep fit. In this book, Rylee Dionigi explores the motives, actions and experiences of 138 older Australian Masters Games competitors. She innovatively draws on qualitative interview and observational data using insights from post-structural theories, life-stage theories and postmodern understandings of identity. The findings simultaneously expose alternative ways of thinking about sport and ageing, and reflect a society that values competitiveness, youthfulness and physical activity. Dionigi argues that an investment in competitive sporting practices can paradoxically be both personally empowering and a sign of desperate resistance to (or fear of) the ageing process. This book is particularly useful to researchers, teachers, students, leisure service providers and health policy experts, or anyone interested in gaining critical and original insight into the growing phenomenon of older competitive athletes.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationGermany
PublisherVDM Verlag Dr. Muller
Number of pages272
ISBN (Print)9783639048353
Publication statusPublished - 2008


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