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Northwest Missouri State University


Library Home » Electronic Theses » Recreation » Ryan Francis Schleusner

The Impact of Participation in Intercollegiate Athletics on Future Life Satisfaction

Author: Ryan Francis Schleusner
M.S. in Recreation
Department of Health and Human Services
December 2012
Abstract

Satisfaction with life is something that is important to society as whole. This research aimed to measure the impact of participation in extracurricular activities and/or interscholastic athletics on future life satisfaction among former college graduates. Three student subgroups were identified and sorted within a university alumni database: interscholastic athletes, extracurricular participants, and nonparticipants. A random sample of 1,500 alumni was then drawn from each of these three study groups. The Satisfaction with Life Scale was then emailed to the resulting list of 4,500 alumni. A total of 341 surveys were returned: 109 for athletes, 164 for extracurricular participants, and 68 for nonparticipants. Analysis of Variance was used to examine differences in quality of life across these three student populations. It was found that while former student athletes are more likely to be happy with accomplishments in their life, they are not more satisfied with life as a whole. This study accepts the conclusion that participation in extracurricular activities, including competitive sport, has no impact in future overall life satisfaction. One area for future study is the impact of athletic involvement on satisfaction with goal achievement or if individuals who are athletes just tend to be goal oriented to begin with.