Female Higher Education Students’ Lived Experiences during the COVID-19 Pandemic: The Case Study Viewed through a Phenomenological Lens

Atkins, Denise
Godber, Kathleen
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Journal Article
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This paper examines the subjective realities of female students in higher education as they navigated their well-being and active lives during the COVID-19 pandemic. Drawing upon Merleau-Ponty’s phenomenological framework, which confronts an often-neglected dimension of our experience—the lived body and the phenomenal world—we aim to inform the development of targeted support and interventions to address the specific needs of female students, in future pandemic times. By exploring how three female students studying sport and recreation in higher education perceived their experiences, this article seeks to shed light on the unique challenges faced by these women in maintaining physical activity, coping with isolation and a change in social networks, and managing their mental health in the context of the pandemic. Understanding these subjective realities (such as isolation, restricted physical activity, and loss of social connections) and interpreting the three students’ lived habitats, their bodily responsiveness, and their spontaneity ensures that their experience is heard, and appropriate future support can be given.

5203 Clinical and Health Psychology , 39 Education , 52 Psychology , Behavioral and Social Science , 3 Good Health and Well Being
COVID, ISSN: 2673-8112 (Print); 2673-8112 (Online), MDPI AG, 3(9), 1244-1258. doi: 10.3390/covid3090088
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