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Thursday, 3 October 2013

Innovation Infusion Event! October 17th



The Master of Arts in Sustainable Leisure Management at VIU, in conjunction with theWorld Leisure Centre of Excellence (WLCE), is pleased to introduce Visiting Scholar Dr. Katherine King from Bournemouth University in the UK.  Dr. King joins us as part of our mandate to offer both our students and our community the opportunity to learn from the experiences and research of global scholars through public presentations. Join us at the World Leisure Centre of Excellence for Dr. King’s presentation, which is one of the WLCE’s Innovation Infusion Events this Fall at VIU. 


Dr. Katherine King joined the School of Tourism at Bournemouth University in the UK in 2011 as Lecturer in Leisure Studies. Her research interests focus on the geographies of sport and leisure, in particular the interconnections between identities, lifestyles and sport and leisure spaces in the countryside. She specializes in qualitative research and her recent work explores participation in mountain biking. Dr. King completed her PhD research in the School of Environment at the University of Brighton in 2009 where she was subsequently employed as lecturer in human geography. Her PhD research, supported by the Forestry Commission, explored young people's participation in countryside leisure. Her research adopted ethnographic techniques to investigate young people's experiences of mountain biking in South East England focusing on the relationship between participant and place. She also worked as a youth researcher at Brunel University on a large scale AHRC funded research project investigating youth people's religious experiences and identities in multi faith settings and as a researcher on several projects focused on participation in sport, leisure and events in the South East. Click here to view Dr. King's profile.


The potential role of sport and physical activity in improving the health of populations has been recognized on a global scale. Within health policies, young people are often identified as a key target group for whom participation in healthy forms of leisure which incorporate sport and physical activity may have particularly significant benefits for health and wellbeing. Consequently youth groups have been the focus of several government policies to increase participation, particularly in the UK. Lifestyle sports represent one such strategy for encouraging and sustaining new engagements in sport and physical activity in youth groups. However, there is at present a lack of understanding of the use of these activities within policy contexts. This lecture presents findings from a government initiative which sought to increase participation in sport for young people through provision of facilities for mountain biking in a forest in South East England. It will explore the practical and theoretical implications of the integration of alternative forms of sports into state managed leisure schemes in rural spaces and consider both the opportunities and challenges such activities present for policy makers. 

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