Factors influencing participation in individuals with disability: A secondary data analysis

Christina Green, The University of Texas School of Public Health


Individuals with disabilities face numerous barriers to participation due to biological and physical characteristics of the disability as well as social and environmental factors. Participation can be impacted on all levels from societal, to activities of daily living, exercise, education, and interpersonal relationships. This study evaluated the impact of pain, mood, depression, quality of life and fatigue on participation for individuals with mobility impairments. This cross sectional study derives from self-report data collected from a wheelchair using sample. Bivariate correlational and multivariate analysis were employed to examine the relationship between pain, quality of life, positive and negative mood, fatigue, and depression with participation while controlling for relevant socio-demographic variables (sex, age, time with disability, race, and education). Results from the 122 respondents with mobility impairments demonstrated that after controlling for socio-demographic characteristics in the full model, 20% of the variance in participation scores were accounted for by pain, quality of life, positive and negative mood, and depression. Notably, quality of life emerged as being the single variable that was significantly related to participation in the full model. Contrary to other studies, pain did not appear to significantly impact participation outcomes for wheelchair users in this sample. Participation is an emerging area of interest among rehabilitation and disability researchers, and results of this study provide compelling evidence that several psychosocial factors are related to participation. This area of inquiry warrants further study, as many of the psychosocial variables identified in this study (mood, depression, quality of life) may be amenable to intervention, which may also positively influence participation.

Subject Area

Physical therapy|Health education

Recommended Citation

Green, Christina, "Factors influencing participation in individuals with disability: A secondary data analysis" (2011). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI1507997.