‘It feels human … ’: reflective race research in kinesiology

Cory E. Dixon, Korey Boyd, Mara Simon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper presents the experiences of a racially integrated research team–two Black male scholars and one white female scholar–drawn from a series of recorded conversations and journal entries as part of weekly research meetings while engaging in race research across more than a year's time. While our work inherently centered race by nature of the topics we researched, we chose to also critically reflect on what it means to do research together as Black and white scholars, and how kinesiology might benefit from our model of working together. Through thoughtful reflection linked to scholarship, we aimed to answer the questions of how our work yielded new understandings of the data we were collecting and analyzing, and how the field might utilize our collective research team experience. Using Critical Race Theory, Critical Whiteness Studies, and intersectionality, we situated our experiences of working together within the existing literature on race dynamics in higher education to illustrate how our processes disrupted whiteness and furthered a justice-oriented approach to conducting race research. First, we highlight the status of race in higher education and kinesiology, with a specific focus on PE teacher education (PETE), since that is our field of study. From there, we outline the theoretical frameworks that informed the research project and our approach to working together. Next, we use the meeting recordings and transcriptions to analyze how the research team functioned, highlighting Korey Boyd's and Cory Dixon's experiences of engaging in race-related research and then turning to Mara Simon's reflexive attempts to disrupt whiteness even as she embodied it within the group dynamics. Finally, we conclude by addressing negotiations and tensions of this process, along with implications and recommendations for future race research in kinesiology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalSport, Education and Society
StateAccepted/In press - 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Education


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