An investigation of home advantage in the Summer Paralympic Games

WILSON, Darryl and RAMCHANDANI, Girish (2017). An investigation of home advantage in the Summer Paralympic Games. Sport Sciences for Health, 13 (3), 625-633.

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Purpose: There is a paucity of home advantage research set in the context of para-sport events. It is this gap in the knowledge that this paper addresses by investigating the prevalence and size of home advantage in the Summer Paralympic Games. Methods: Using a standardised measure of success, we compared the performances of nations when competing at home with their own performances away from home in the competition between 1960 and 2016. Both country level and individual sport level analysis was conducted for this time frame. A Wilcoxon signed rank test was used to determine whether there was a genuine difference in nations' performance under host and non-host conditions. Spearman's rank-order correlation was run to assess the relationship between nation quality and home advantage. Results: Strong evidence of a home advantage effect in the Summer Paralympic Games was found at country level (p < 0.01). When examining individual sports, only athletics, table tennis and wheelchair fencing returned a significant home advantage effect (p < 0.05). Possible explanations for these findings are discussed. The size of the home advantage effect was not significantly correlated with the quality or strength of the host nation (p > 0.10). Conclusion: While our results confirm that home advantage is prevalent in the Summer Paralympic Games at an overall country level and within specific sports, they do not explain fully why such an effect does exist. Future studies should investigate the causes of home advantage in the competition and also draw comparisons with the Summer Olympic Games in order to explore any differences between para-sport events and able-bodied events.

Item Type: Article
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Sport Industry Research Centre
Identification Number:
Page Range: 625-633
Depositing User: Girish Ramchandani
Date Deposited: 16 Aug 2017 11:07
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2021 01:06

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