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Title:The motivational determinants of exercise involvement: A social psychological process/stage approach
Author(s):Kimiecik, John Charles
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Roberts, Glyn C.
Department / Program:Kinesiology and Community Health
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Education, Physical
Education, Educational Psychology
Education, Health
Abstract:Much of the research examining the motivational aspects of exercise behavior has been descriptive. One weakness of this descriptive research is the overuse of a product oriented approach, which assumes that stable characteristics of the person or situation can predict exercise behavior. This type of research approach has contributed little to the understanding of the motivational process by which individuals initiate, adapt to, and maintain exercise behavior. Thus, the first purpose of this study was to investigate possible differences in the underlying social psychological processes of motivation for individuals at varying stages of exercise involvement (i.e., initiation, adaptation, maintenance). A second weakness of descriptive research is that by definition it is atheoretical. A need exists for theoretical frameworks to help explain and understand the motivational complexity of exercise behavior. Hence, the second purpose of this study was to examine the utility of the theories of reasoned action, planned behavior, and personal investment to predict and explain exercise behavior. Participants were 332 corporate employees who completed the Exercise Activity Questionnaire (EAQ), which assessed the theoretical variables. Based on self-report, participants were also classified as exercise initiators, adapters, or maintainers to examine motivational differences between these groups. To examine the predictive utility of the theories, participants completed a short followup questionnaire four weeks after completing the EAQ that assessed self-reported frequency of exercise during the past four weeks. The results indicate that the underlying motivational processes are quite different for individuals at varying stages of exercise involvement. In addition, supplementary analyses suggest that different psychological mechanisms may be involved as individuals make behavioral transitions from one stage to the next. These findings indicate support for the motivational relevance of a process approach to the study of exercise behavior. The results related to the predictive utility of the reasoned action, planned behavior, and personal investment indicate that planned behavior and personal investment provide adequate prediction of exercise behavior. Future theoretical research, in addition to utilizing a more process-oriented approach, should begin to examine conceptual links between variables in planned behavior and personal investment. This may allow for theory integration and perhaps even more powerful prediction and understanding of the complex psychological processes underlying exercise behavior.
Issue Date:1990
Rights Information:Copyright 1990 Kimiecik, John Charles
Date Available in IDEALS:2011-05-07
Identifier in Online Catalog:AAI9026228
OCLC Identifier:(UMI)AAI9026228

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