Diversification of Physical Activities: An Exploration of Provision Characteristics of Holistic Movement Practices in a Large Australian City

Author: Ineke Vergeer1, Bojana Klepac-Pogrmilovic2
1 Centre for Health Research, University of Southern Queensland, Springfield Central, QLD 4300, Australia.
2 Mitchell Institute for Education and Health Policy, Victoria University, Melbourne, VIC 3011, Australia.
Conference/Journal: Int J Environ Res Public Health
Date published: 2021 Oct 1
Other: Volume ID: 18 , Issue ID: 19 , Pages: 10365 , Special Notes: doi: 10.3390/ijerph181910365. , Word Count: 218

Holistic movement practices (HMPs) are an emerging category of physical activity, contributing to the diversification of physical activity opportunities. Purposefully incorporating not only physical but also mental, social, and/or spiritual elements, HMPs have received limited research attention with respect to participation parameters. The purpose of this study was to begin to map HMPs' participation potential by exploring the provision features of HMPs in Melbourne. Data were collected via internet searches, with a focus on events offered. Event features, including type, cost, duration, venue address, and target groups, were recorded. Associated neighbourhood characteristics were also explored by linking venue locations to selected census information. Provision was documented for Yoga and Pilates in central Melbourne (1011 events), for Tai Chi and Qigong (323 events), and for a range of smaller HMPs (149 events) across Greater Melbourne. Results indicated a wide range in provision features. Affinities with the holistic nature of HMPs were noticeable in venue choices and neighbourhood socio-demographics. Mention of specific target groups was infrequent. Results are discussed in light of implications for uptake. HMPs exemplify the increasing diversity of physical activity opportunities in modern-day societies. Further research to elucidate their place in the landscape of physical activities is warranted.

Keywords: Qigong; Tai Chi; Yoga; conscious dance; mindful movement; mind–body; physical activity diversity; sport management.

PMID: 34639664 PMCID: PMC8507811 DOI: 10.3390/ijerph181910365