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Updated October 13, 2020

Football and Men with Schizophrenia

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Football and Men with Schizophrenia essay
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Project Proposal Briefing Paper

Football as a Social Interaction for Men Living with Schizophrenia within a Low Secure Forensic Unit

The proposed secondary research project would examine the feasibility of introducing football as a social interaction for men living with schizophrenia within a low secure forensic unit. This desk-based research would not require any primary research or interaction with human participants.

The research would examine primary research on the effectiveness of current forms of social interaction for men living with schizophrenia within a low secure forensic unit in addition to primary research on the effectiveness of this intervention in other settings. It would then make recommendations for primary research involving a pilot project that would introduce this intervention in this population.

Project Aim/Objectives

The aim of the project is to explore the feasibility of introducing football as a social interaction for men living with schizophrenia within a low secure forensic unit.

The objectives are:

  1. conduct a systematic review on the effectiveness of current forms of social interaction for men living with schizophrenia within a low secure forensic unit;
  2. conduct a systematic review of the effectiveness of football as a social interaction for men living with schizophrenia in other mental health settings;
  3. evaluate the feasibility of introducing football as a social interaction for men living with schizophrenia within a low secure forensic unit;
  4. present recommendations for a pilot project to evaluate the effectiveness of football as a social interaction for men living with schizophrenia within a low secure forensic unit.

Rationale

There is an increasing evidence base supporting the use of football as a social intervention in community and mental health settings (Parnell & Richardson, 2014). For example, British homeless people engaged in the Homeless World Cup felt that their social inclusion improved (Magee & Jeanes, 2013).

Curran et al. (2017) conclude that British community football-based mental health interventions are effective in improving inclusion, physical fitness, and recovery, but a more strategic approach is needed to for better delivery and facilitation of mental health.

Holley et al.’s (2011) systematic review concluded that physical activity interventions for people with schizophrenia significantly improve their physical fitness, social skills, and general well-being. Psychiatric patients using exercise-based interventions felt that exercise-based interventions fostered social inclusion and aided in recovery (Mason & Holt, 2012). Friedrich and Mason’s (2017) review of football-based public mental health interventions concluded that, while qualitative studies identified participant views of increased psychological and physical well-being, there was a need for quality quantitative studies to triangulate these findings.

Battaglia et al.’s (2013) randomized controlled trial demonstrated that patients with schizophrenia who received football practice in addition to standard treatment experienced significantly improved psychophysical health. Nevertheless, Taylor et al. (2016) has identified potential barriers to adopting social interventions for use in forensic wards. There is a gap in research identifying what makes football-based interventions effective and how they can be implemented in low-security settings.

Potential/Intended Outcome

The proposed research is expected to inform the design and implementation of an intervention that would meet all five domains of the NHS Outcomes Framework (Department of Health and Social Care, 2019).

It would:

  1. help to prevent people with schizophrenia from dying prematurely;
  2. enhance the quality of life for people with schizophrenia;
  3. aid in recovery from schizophrenia;
  4. improve positive experiences of forensic care;
  5. be implemented in a safe protective environment.

References

  1. Battaglia, G., Alesi, M., Inguglia, M., Roccella, M., Caramazza, G., Bellafiore, M., & Palma, A. (2013).
  2. Soccer practice as an add-on treatment in the management of individuals with a diagnosis of schizophrenia. Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment, 9, 595.Curran, K., Rosenbaum, S., Parnell, D., Stubbs, B., Pringle, A., & Hargreaves, J. (2017).
  3. Tackling mental health: the role of professional football clubs. Sport in Society, 20(2), 281-291.Department of Health and Social Care (2019).
  4. NHS Outcomes Framework. London: Department of Health and Social Care.Friedrich, B., & Mason, O. J. (2017).
  5. “What is the score?” A review of football-based public mental health interventions. Journal of Public Mental Health, 16(4), 144-158.Holley, J., Crone, D., Tyson, P., & Lovell, G. (2011).
  6. The effects of physical activity on psychological well‐being for those with schizophrenia: A systematic review. British Journal of Clinical Psychology, 50(1), 84-105.

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