Perceived Benefits of Curling in Older Canadian Women


The global population of older adults is rising, and Canada is no exception. Currently, older adults make up 18.8% of the population and this number is expected to reach 25% in 2068. As a result, there is an increased focus on healthy aging, which has the potential to maintian the quality of life of older adults. A cornerstone of healthy aging is regular participation in physical activities such as sport. In Canada, the sport of curling is popular among older adults, although little is known about its value, particualrly for women. The present study sought to exaine the expereinces of older Canadian women in curling. Seventeen women (average age 62.47 years ± 6.53) were recruited to particiapte in semi-structured interviews. Interviews were transcribed and coded suing thematic analysis. Results indicated that participants view of aging was quite nuanced, whereby they simultaneosuly resisted, accepted, and ultimately redefined their conceptulizations of aging. Furthermore, competition and social factors were viewed as integral to the curling experience. In addition, participants appreciated the inclusive nature and strategic requirements of the sport. This study suggests participation in curling, in particular, and sport in general, can play a key role in maximizing health, function, and wellbeing during older life.