Purpose: Personality traits such as honesty-humility, emotionality, extraversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, and openness to experience (HEXACO) have been linked to numerous adaptive outcomes in academic, sport, and physical activity settings; yet little if any such research has been conducted with physical education (PE) students. The aim of this study was to investigate relations between the HEXACO trait personality dimensions and five noteworthy outcomes in PE, namely task and ego goal orientation, importance-value, intention to enroll, and grade. Method: Survey data were gathered from 316 ninth and tenth-grade PE students. Results: Personality collectively predicted each of the outcomes (p < .001). Conclusion: Students with certain personalities—particularly those lower in extraversion—might be more susceptible to some less favorable outcomes in secondary PE. To better differentiate instruction in PE, there may be some merit in increasing physical educator awareness of personality traits and how they might compromise some adaptive outcomes in PE.
Ken R. Lodewyk and Colin M. Pybus
Several studies have reported declining student enrolment rates in optional physical education. This study—incorporating constructs from social cognitive, self-determination, and body image theory—investigated factors that might be influential to this trend. Surveys were administered to 227 tenth-grade students from five schools in one school district of Ontario, Canada. MANOVA results revealed a significant main effect difference in variables by gender and enrollment group but not by the interaction. Enrollees had statistically higher motivation (domain value, self-efficacy, perceived autonomy support, and autonomous regulation), PE grade, and weekly levels of exercise beyond physical education. Qualitatively, nonenrollees reported more social concerns, less domain value, and disliked activities like fitness training, health content, and competition. Females had statistically higher body size discrepancy and qualitatively more domain value and concern about the social setting and the type of activities. Implications for the retention of high school physical education students are discussed.
Zan Gao, Ken R. Lodewyk and Tao Zhang
This study uncovers the predictive relationship of middle school students’ ability beliefs (self-efficacy and expectancy-related beliefs) and incentives (outcome expectancy, importance, interest, and usefulness) to intention, cardiovascular fitness, and teacher-rated effort in physical education. Participants (N = 252; 118 boys, 134 girls) completed questionnaires assessing their ability beliefs, incentives, and intention for future participation in physical education, and then had their cardiovascular fitness assessed with the Progressive Aerobic Cardiovascular Endurance Run (PACER) test. Students’ effort in class was rated by their respective physical education teachers. Correlation analysis yielded significantly positive relationships between ability beliefs and incentives. Regression results revealed that ability beliefs, importance, interest, and usefulness significantly predicted intention for future participation. Ability beliefs also emerged as significant predictors of PACER test scores whereas self-efficacy was the only predictor of teacher-rated effort. Implications for educational practice are discussed.
Ken R. Lodewyk, Kimberley L. Gammage and Philip J. Sullivan
Increasing dropout rates in senior high school physical education, particularly among females, and unhealthy activity and obesity levels in youth have led to recommendations to assess potential contributing factors in physical education participation. Drawing from gender, body image, and social-cognitive theory, this study investigated relations between body size discrepancy, self-efficacy, test anxiety, and achievement in 316 high school physical education students. Gender differences were noted in body size discrepancy (females reported the desire to have a smaller body). Specifically in females, body size discrepancy predicted test anxiety, which predicted self-efficacy. Self-efficacy predicted achievement in both males and females. The results signal that gender-specific relations among these constructs are important factors to consider in the achievement scores of students in high school physical education. Physical education programs should model curricula and instructional practices that defuse potentially harmful body image discrepancies that seem most poignant in females while engaging all learners to feel competent and safe.