A Virtual Camp for Adolescents with Developmental Disabilities During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Changes in Physical Activity, Function, and Psychosocial Health
Term of Award
Master of Science in Kinesiology (M.S.)
Document Type and Release Option
Thesis (open access)
Copyright Statement / License for Reuse
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Department of Health Sciences and Kinesiology
Committee Member 1
Committee Member 2
Non-Voting Committee Member
Christoper Modlesky Christopher.Modlesky@uga.edu
Adolescents with developmental disabilities (DD) have low levels of physical activity (PA), are more likely to be overweight or obese, and are at an increased risk of developing secondary conditions compared to their typically developing peers. Participation in PA has been linked to a myriad of benefits including improvements in psychosocial health, decreased risk of developing secondary conditions, and opportunities for socialization. Summer camps provide opportunities for adolescents with DD to participate in meaningful activities while being physically active during the summer months when school is out and there is a change in routines, skill and learning loss is a threat, and adolescents are more sedentary than during the school year. Camp RAD (recreation for adolescents with disabilities) is a 4-week summer day camp in southeast Georgia that uses an interdisciplinary approach to teach health, PA, nutritional, and life skills to adolescents with DD in a fun and educational environment. In response to the COVID-19, Camp RAD staff adapted the camp curriculum to a 100% virtual format to meet the needs of adolescents with disabilities during the pandemic. The purpose of this study is to evaluate changes in PA and sleep quality, and psychosocial health after attending a virtual camp. Campers wore activity monitors pre-camp, during camp, and post-camp to monitor PA. Parents completed 8 HealthMeasures PROMIS Pediatric Parent-Proxy measures to evaluate family relationships, PA, peer relationships, upper extremity function, strength, sleep, meaning and purpose, and stress. Overall, PA levels did not increase during camp, but were maintained throughout the summer. Significant improvements in PA, peer relationships, and upper extremity function were observed according to PROMIS measure results. Participation in the virtual Camp RAD was beneficial during the COVID-19 pandemic as campers were able to maintain PA and social contact with peers throughout camp.
Creveling, Sarah, " A Virtual Camp for Adolescents with Developmental Disabilities During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Changes in Physical Activity, Function, and Psychosocial Health" (2022). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 3694. https://digitalcommons.georgiasouthern.edu/etd/3694
Research Data and Supplementary Material