Relationships among Self-Schema, Intention, and Exercise Behavior

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Paul Estabrooks The University of Calgary

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Kerry S. Courneya The University of Calgary

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The purpose of the study was to determine if exercise self-schema predicts exercise participation and moderates the exercise intention-behavior relationship. Participants were undergraduate students categorized into exerciser schematics (n = 527), nonexerciser schematics (n = 52), and aschematics (n = 106). The first of two questionnaires, given 4 weeks apart, included intention items for moderate and strenuous exercise, and exercise at university facilities. The second questionnaire included self-reported exercise items. Attendance at the university fitness facilities was monitored during the 4-week period between questionnaires. Kruskal-Wallis tests determined exerciser schematics reported intending to and exercising more often than aschematics and nonexerciser schematics for all measures (p < .01). Fischer z transformations revealed partial support for the hypothesis that exerciser schematics would have a higher correlation between intention and exercise than aschematics or nonexerciser schematics. Discussion focused on overcoming schematic assessment problems, offered explanation of results, and proposed future exercise self-schema research.

Paul Estabrooks is now with the Faculty of Health Sciences at The University of Western Ontario, London, ON Canada N6A 3K7. Kerry S. Coumeya is with the Faculty of Kinesiology at The University of Calgary, 2500 University Drive NW, Calgary, AB Canada T2N1N4.

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