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Mikihiro Sato, James Du and Yuhei Inoue

Background:

Although previous studies supported the health benefits of physical activity, these studies were limited to individual-level research designs. Building upon a social-ecological model, we examined the relationship between physical activity and community health—the health status of a defined group of people—while accounting for the potential endogeneity of physical activity to health.

Methods:

We obtained U.S. county-level data from the 2012 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System survey and the 2014 County Health Ranking Database. We first conducted an ordinary least squares (OLS) regression analysis to examine the relationship between the rate of physical activity and community health measured by the average perceived health score for each county. We then conducted a 2-stage least squares (2SLS) regression analysis to investigate this relationship after accounting for potential endogeneity.

Results:

Results from the OLS analysis indicated that the rate of physical activity was positively associated with community health. Results from the 2SLS analysis confirmed that the physical activity rate remained positively associated with community health.

Conclusions:

In line with the social-ecological model, our findings provide the first evidence for the health benefits of county-level physical activity. Our results support extant research that has shown relationships between physical activity and individual-level, health-related outcomes.

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James Du, Heather Kennedy, Jeffrey D. James and Daniel C. Funk

To combat the declining number of finishers plaguing the distance-running industry, it is increasingly important for organizers to optimize event satisfaction levels. Participants’ survey responses from two distance-running events (n 1 = 2,324 and n 2 = 2,526) were analyzed to challenge the traditional managerial scope and theoretical lens through which event satisfaction is conventionally examined. Results revealed five event benefits that capture key motivational antecedents of event satisfaction. Collectively, these benefits, including euphoric, fitness, competition, social, and entertainment benefits, influenced event satisfaction levels (R 2 = 43%) and repeat consumption intentions (R 2 = 23%). For event organizers to foster event satisfaction, it is central to encourage event preparation and participation that promotes the enjoyment of physical activity, fitness and appearance enhancement, socialization, competition, and excitement among registrants. Academics should also extend their scope of event satisfaction to fully capture the entirety of event experience lifecycles (e.g., from registration through event participation).

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James Du, Jeremy S. Jordan and Daniel C. Funk

The current study was an investigation of the role of personal performance, an internal assessment of timegoal achievement, on participants’ event satisfaction that would contribute to positive outcomes. Multiattribute online surveys were distributed to participants at two distance participant sport events held in the Southeast and Northeast United States (N = 3,476 and 4,828). A multidimensional Participant Sport Event Attribute and Service Delivery (PSEASD) scale was developed to capture a spectrum of service touch points encountered during the event experience. Empirical results using covariance-based structural equation modeling was used to test and support a proposed model revealing that personal performance was a stronger positive determinant of event satisfaction than traditional service quality and perceived value. A significant negative interaction effect between service quality and personal performance was also revealed. Collectively, the model explained 41% of variance in event satisfaction, and 26% of behavioral intentions. Based on the findings, we suggest managing personal performance expectations is important to holistically manage and promote overall event satisfaction in a participant sport event setting.

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Thilo Kunkel, Jason P. Doyle, Daniel C. Funk, James Du and Heath McDonald

The importance of team brand associations in sport management research is well documented, but the formation and stability of these associations has not been investigated. The current research tested the development, change, and predictive ability of brand associations over time. Longitudinal quantitative data were collected from consumers of a new Australian Football League (AFL) team (N = 169) at 3 points in time. One-sample t-tests revealed that brand associations had developed through marketing communications and the launch of the team before the team had played its first AFL game. Repeated-measures multivariate analysis of variance and latent growth modeling showed that brand associations changed over time, reflecting consumers’ experiences with the team. A cross-lagged panel model highlighted that brand associations influenced consumer loyalty in the future. Consequently, sport managers are provided with insights on the development of and change in brand associations that new consumers link with sport teams.

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Yuhei Inoue, Mikihiro Sato, Kevin Filo, James Du and Daniel C. Funk

Elite and professional sport events have been recognized as potential mechanisms to enhance well-being. This multicountry study investigates how engagement in such events, behaviorally through live spectating and psychologically through team identification, is associated with life satisfaction. Data from Australia (N = 268) revealed a positive association between live spectating and life satisfaction through a two-wave design measuring live spectating and life satisfaction in separate surveys. Data from the United States (N = 564) confirmed the live spectating–life satisfaction relationship found in Study 1. Additionally, Study 2 revealed individuals with higher levels of team identification perceived greater emotional support from other fans, and this perception, in turn, predicted life satisfaction. Our findings provide sport managers with implications for positioning appeals in support of sport programs and designing events that facilitate engagement to promote life satisfaction in the community.