Te Mauri - Pimatisiwin

Enhancing the Relevance of Physical Activity Research by Engaging Aboriginal Peoples in the Research Process

Abstract

The purpose of this research was to identify relevant and respectful research topics and questions that address the physical activity of urban Aboriginal youth. A community-based research partnership was developed among three members of a Canadian university and two members of an Aboriginal organization. As a result of this partnership, six community consultations with 10–15 Aboriginal youth and stakeholders took place over three months. Consultations were recorded and transcribed, and a thematic analysis was conducted. Community consultations supported the identification of physical activity research topics and questions that need more attention. Using the words of the participants, findings are represented in five themes: (1) “motivator as the parent,” (2) “it’s still word of mouth,” (3) “incorporate culture,” (4) “it’s all about the money,” and (5) “you’re treated a little bit different.” In addition, notions of “sport,” “community,” and “culture” are notable threads that span the five themes. The findings led to the development of an overarching research question for a recently awarded national research grant. This research is a practical example of how Aboriginal peoples can and should be involved in the identification of relevant physical activity research questions.

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