In the absence of a Ministry of Sport, the Italian sports governance structure is headed by the National Olympic Committee (NOC) that rules on both elite and grassroots sport having the power to recognise, regulate and subsidise each sport’s National Governing Bodies (NGB). However, a parallel system was developed after the end of World War II to manage the provision of sport-for-all activities as a means for social inclusion, participation and recreation (Porro 1995). This system is composed of several umbrella-organisations called Sport Promotion Bodies, which were initially born as the sporting vanguards of mass parties but later obtained formal recognition by the NOC in 1974 and gradually gained (a still incomplete) political autonomy from the 1990s onwards (Porro 2013). While the smaller Sport Promotion Bodies mainly support limited programmes and events based on just a few specific activities, the biggest ones also manage their own yearly leagues for a broad range of different sports. Amongst the latter, the CSI (Centro Sportivo Italiano) and the UISP (Unione Italiana Sport Per tutti) have 1 million and 1.4 million members respectively, loosely ranging from regularly employed sport instructors and street workers involved in social projects to occasional sport practitioners who use the services provided by affiliated local clubs or leisure centres. Although most Sport Promotion Bodies tend to replicate the hierarchical and rigid structure of the NOC-affiliated NGBs, their different mission means they can afford a greater organisational diversity and flexibility, which makes them more suitable to accommodate occasional and less structured forms of physical and cultural activities (Ferrero Camoletto, Sterchele and Genova 2015). Three Sport Promotion Bodies – AICS (Associazione Italiana Cultura e Sport), CSEN (Centro Sportivo Educativo Nazionale) and UISP – have recently been particularly active in trying to intercept and co-opt the new trends in bodily and sport cultures, with specific attention given to street sports and notably parkour as an emerging practice. The Italian context therefore provides an interesting case-study to investigate the role played and the organisational forms developed by sport governing bodies with regard to non-conventional physical activities (Ojala 2015; Wheaton 2013; Coates et al. 2010; Skille 2008; Humphreys 1996). This chapter focuses on the policies put in place by UISP in this field and explores the challenges, tensions and ambiguities involved in such attempt to co-opt lifestyle sports and other informal physical activities.

Undisciplined spaces: lifestyle sports and sport-for-all policies in Italy

DIGENNARO, Simone
Methodology
;
BORGOGNI, Antonio
Conceptualization
2017

Abstract

In the absence of a Ministry of Sport, the Italian sports governance structure is headed by the National Olympic Committee (NOC) that rules on both elite and grassroots sport having the power to recognise, regulate and subsidise each sport’s National Governing Bodies (NGB). However, a parallel system was developed after the end of World War II to manage the provision of sport-for-all activities as a means for social inclusion, participation and recreation (Porro 1995). This system is composed of several umbrella-organisations called Sport Promotion Bodies, which were initially born as the sporting vanguards of mass parties but later obtained formal recognition by the NOC in 1974 and gradually gained (a still incomplete) political autonomy from the 1990s onwards (Porro 2013). While the smaller Sport Promotion Bodies mainly support limited programmes and events based on just a few specific activities, the biggest ones also manage their own yearly leagues for a broad range of different sports. Amongst the latter, the CSI (Centro Sportivo Italiano) and the UISP (Unione Italiana Sport Per tutti) have 1 million and 1.4 million members respectively, loosely ranging from regularly employed sport instructors and street workers involved in social projects to occasional sport practitioners who use the services provided by affiliated local clubs or leisure centres. Although most Sport Promotion Bodies tend to replicate the hierarchical and rigid structure of the NOC-affiliated NGBs, their different mission means they can afford a greater organisational diversity and flexibility, which makes them more suitable to accommodate occasional and less structured forms of physical and cultural activities (Ferrero Camoletto, Sterchele and Genova 2015). Three Sport Promotion Bodies – AICS (Associazione Italiana Cultura e Sport), CSEN (Centro Sportivo Educativo Nazionale) and UISP – have recently been particularly active in trying to intercept and co-opt the new trends in bodily and sport cultures, with specific attention given to street sports and notably parkour as an emerging practice. The Italian context therefore provides an interesting case-study to investigate the role played and the organisational forms developed by sport governing bodies with regard to non-conventional physical activities (Ojala 2015; Wheaton 2013; Coates et al. 2010; Skille 2008; Humphreys 1996). This chapter focuses on the policies put in place by UISP in this field and explores the challenges, tensions and ambiguities involved in such attempt to co-opt lifestyle sports and other informal physical activities.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11580/64225
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