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Table 3 Barriers to physical activity participation

From: Perceived barriers and enablers to physical activity participation in people with Alopecia Areata: a constructivist grounded theory study

Themes Female Male
Being stared at But I do get some funny looks after I go to the swim (Daisy, FG)
People should stop caring about how other people look like! (Betty, FG)
I feel like people are looking at me. People look at you like you are cancer patient, so they think like I shouldn't be here (at the gym) (Andrew, TI)
Body Image I would probably still rather go somewhere further away from home because I know a lot of people in my area, so I wouldn't want someone to see me (Betty, FG)
I did stop running because of Alopecia. Your body is not handling if you are losing your hair (Mary, FG)
When I had hair before and I was sort of more establish like I did play netball, I did all sort of sports as well and then when it started falling out, I sort of stopped doing all of that (Any, FG)
I have been consumed by alopecia. I didn't want to be doing sports, I didn't want anyone to find out, I stopped doing personal training and playing netball and few other things (Betty, FG)
Where I was in a small town, they did not understand what was going on with me, so I shun social activities certainly sports is one of them
(Charlie, FG)
Managing the noticeability of the
But like playing sports, I probably wouldn't play sport rather than wear my wig and play. and you kind of feel like your hair line isn’t in the right spot. So, it does hold me back from doing sports and things like that (Betty, FG)
I would like to do a body combat class. But I would always go to the side of the class because it is my safety corner so that I can make a quick exit without being stared (Katty, FG)
Many years ago, I used to ride a bike and I had never ridden it since I had Alopecia because it's too uncomfortable with putting a helmet on a bald head and then when you wear a wig and you have to put the helmet on top of it and you don’t have circulation there. (Daisy, FG)
Restricted dress code I love doing gymnastics and being on stage, and gymnastics is all about being beautiful and having hair, I can’t do that because I have no hair (Katty, FG)
You can’t really many sports with the hat on because it is the uniform policies. I was invited to play mixed netball, I didnt want to play because I couldnt wear a hat because team sports and it is part of uniform regulation (Jane, TI)
Psychosocial-Being self-conscious and embarrassed When AA was at worst, I wouldn’t be able to tie my hair up like it was and it made me very self-conscious. So, I wouldn’t go to the gym as often as I would now (Julia, TI)
Everything I love to do is too difficult and it’s too embarrassing. I would like to the gym but it’s too embarrassing (Daisy, FG)
I used to run in the treadmill, but it just got too embarrassing and I am too conscious of people who is walking around me because my hair would look bad (Gloria, TI)
I guess AA makes you self-conscious in social setting. So, I find it hard to have conversation to new people. that fear of them asking what you look like things like that and the feeling you must explain them is quite difficult (Andrew, TI)
Extreme temperature My physical activity level when is lesser now compared to before AA because wearing hat and wigs can make you very very hot or they can fall off (Gloria, TI)
Last year I didn’t go outside during the weekends for three months because of the wind. That’s why I didn’t play sport (Casey, FG)
Even things like going out for a walk in the day, like if its windy day or something, I am scared (Betty, FG)
When I ride bike, I used to wear a sloppy hat and then my helmet and they get all sweaty and horrible (Charlie, FG)