Factors in Women’s Maintenance of Vigorous or Moderate Physical Activity

in Women in Sport and Physical Activity Journal
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  • 1 Boston University
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Strategies for exercise maintenance of vigorous (n=54) and moderate (n=38) regular women exercisers were compared using the Processes of Change (Marcus, Rossi et al., 1992) and Self-Efficacy scales (Marcus, Selby et al., 1992). Both groups reported highest utilization of Counterconditioning, Self-liberation, Self-reevaluation, and Reinforcement Management, as well as a high degree of exercise self-efficacy. Vigorous exercisers indicated greater utilization of Counterconditioning (p=.004) and a higher degree of self-efficacy (p=.009), whereas moderate exercisers reported higher utilization of Environmental Reevaluation (p=.028). In follow-up interviews with vigorous exercisers (n=4) and moderate exercisers (n=4), all participants reported psychological benefits of physical activity, high exercise self-efficacy, and exercising to meet personal needs. Reported differences between the two groups include physical experiences while exercising, the development of exercise behavior patterns, and social influences. Based upon this study we suggest that similarities outweigh differences in the maintenance of vigorous and moderate exercise, but certain mode-specific interventions may be warranted to enhance adherence.

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