Effects of Participation in a Paralympic Military Sports Camp on Injured Service Members: Implications for Theraputic Recreation


  • Brent L. Hawkins
  • A. Lynne Cory
  • Brandi M. Crowe


Injured service members, recreation, sport, self-determination, social comparison


An increasing number of service members have sustained injuries during their service in Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation Enduring Freedom, and Operation New Dawn resulting in varying disabilities. Many community-based adapted sports programs, including therapeutic recreation programs, provide recreation and sport opportunities for injured service members. However, there is paucity of literature documenting effects of community-based adaptive sport on injured service member participants. Previous literature on adapted recreation, sport, and physical activity programs have focused on civilian populations who have sustained traumatic injury and who are enrolled in rehabilitation programs. Using a phenomenological lens to guide the research, findings indicated themes that align with self-determination theory and social comparison theory. Implications for therapeutic recreation services including suggestions for development of sports camps for injured service members are provided.