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‘Everything I enjoy doing I just couldn’t do’: Biographical disruption for sport-related injury.

Malcolm, D. and Pullen, E., 2020. ‘Everything I enjoy doing I just couldn’t do’: Biographical disruption for sport-related injury. Health: An Interdisciplinary Journal for the Social Study of Health, Illness and Medicine, 24 (4), 366-383.

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DOI: 10.1177/1363459318800142


This article draws on interview data with a population of non-elite sport/exercise participants (n = 20) to illustrate the interrelationship between biographical disruption and sport-related injury. It argues that contrary to the significance implied by their lack of prominence on current public health agendas, sport-related injuries can have a devastating personal impact, comparable to the more extreme variants of biographical disruption depicted in the literature on chronic illness. It seeks to explain the apparent incongruence between biophysical severity and subjective assessment of impact, by invoking notions of community normalisation and imagined futures, and identifying the unavailability of what subjects evaluate as effective medical support. These factors combine to problematise the attainment of biographical repair. It further highlights how biographical contingencies such as youthfulness, distinction through exhibiting responsible citizenship and the sense of failure to exert bodily self-management through exercise, perpetuate and escalate both biographical disruption and chronic illness. The paper thus illustrates the aetiological interdependence of biographical disruption and chronic illness as exercisers exacerbate relatively minor ailments due to their reluctance to modify habitual routines.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:experiencing illness; illness behaviour; narratives; quality of life
Group:Bournemouth University Business School
ID Code:31279
Deposited By: Symplectic RT2
Deposited On:26 Sep 2018 11:45
Last Modified:14 Mar 2022 14:12


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