Predicting Physical Activity from Intention: Conceptual and Methodological Issues

in Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology

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Kerry S. CouraeyaUniversity of Illinois

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Edward McAuleyUniversity of Illinois

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The purpose of this paper was to present two issues that might help to explain the modest and highly variable relationship between intention and physical activity. Specifically, the conceptual distinction between intention and expectation (Warshaw & Davis, 1985) and the failure to obtain what might be referred to as scale correspondence were addressed. It was argued that reasonable conceptual and empirical evidence exists to warrant the distinction between intention and expectation in the physical activity domain and research should try to shed further light on this distinction. Arguments were also made that scale correspondence is a distinct form of correspondence that has been neglected and often violated in the physical activity domain. Four methods of obtaining scale correspondence were then presented as a framework for future empirical research to examine the issue.

Kerry S. Courneya is now with the Faculty of Physical Education at the University of Calgary, 2500 University Drive, N.W., Calgary, Alberta, Canada T2N 1N4. Edward McAuley is with the Department of Kinesiology at the University of Illinois, 215 Freer Hall, 906 S. Goodwin Ave., Urbana, IL 61801.

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