Active Women, Social Physique Anxiety, and Exercise

in Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology
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The purpose of this investigation was to replicate and extend Crawford and Eklund's (1994) investigation of social physique anxiety (SPA) and exercise. Women (N = 94) enrolled in physical education activity or major classes participated in the investigation. Data were collected on SPA, weight satisfaction, percent body fat, reasons for exercise, exercise behaviors and preferences, and attitudes toward two aerobic class video presentations featuring a manipulation of physique salience. Consistent with the previous investigation, self-presentational reasons for exercise (body tone, weight control, and physical attractiveness) were positively associated with SPA in both simple correlations and hierarchical analyses controlling for body composition. In contrast to previous findings, SPA was not associated with favorability of attitudes toward either of the video presentations. The inability to fully replicate Crawford and Eklund's (1993) findings raised interesting questions with regard to variables that may moderate or mediate self-presentational anxiety in exercise settings.

Robert C. Eklund is with the Department of Health, Physical Education, and Recreation at the University of North Dakota, Box 8235, Grand Forks, ND 58202. Sally Crawford is with the Department of Human Services at National Louis University, 2840 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60201.

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