"I Can't Imagine My Life Without It!" Curling and Health Promotion: A Photovoice Study

Beverly D. Leipert, Robyn Plunkett, Donna Meagher-Stewart, Lynn Scruby, Heather Mair, Kevin B. Wamsley

Abstract


The sport of curling is an important activity in rural Canada, with many female participants. The health of women in rural Canada is much compromised compared to that of their urban counterparts, yet little research has explored ways to promote the health of rural women. This study examined the influence of curling on the health of women in rural Canada. A sample of 15 women and girls aged 12 to 72 from 2 communities in southwestern Ontario took pictures, kept logbooks, and participated in 2 group sessions to discuss the influence of curling on their health. The findings reveal that curling facilitates social connections, enhances physical and mental health, and provides a valued and visible way to support rural life. Clearly, curling promotes the health and community life of rural women in significant ways. More support for curling in rural settings is needed, and additional research on the topic of curling and the health of rural women is indicated.

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