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Investigating Motivational Regulations and Physical Activity Over 25 Weeks

Shane N. Sweet, Michelle S. Fortier, and Chris M. Blanchard


Because motivation has been deemed a key barrier to physical activity, it is imperative that we know how motivational levels change over time and how that change relates to physical activity. Based in Self-Determination Theory, this study investigated fluctuations in physical activity and motivational regulations over 25 weeks and tested the relationship between these 2 variables.


Data from the Physical Activity Counseling trial were examined. Inactive adults recruited from a primary care center (N = 120) answered motivation and physical activity questionnaires during the intervention and postintervention phases. Hierarchical linear modeling was used to test the hypotheses.


Quadratic changes were found for external regulation (γ20= 0.02, P < .05) and physical activity (γ20 = –2.64, P < .001), while identified (γ10= 0.04, P = .03) and intrinsic (γ10= 0.04, P = .01) regulations increased linearly over the course of the 25 weeks. Only identified regulation (γ30= 3.15, P = .01) and intrinsic motivation (γ30= 4.68, P < .001) were significantly and positively related with physical activity.


Physical activity, external and identified regulations and intrinsic motivation changed over the 25 weeks. Intervention should aim at fostering identified regulation and intrinsic motivation as greater levels of these regulations were related with physical activity.

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Toward a New Measure of Intrinsic Motivation, Extrinsic Motivation, and Amotivation in Sports: The Sport Motivation Scale (SMS)

Luc G. Pelletier, Kim M. Tuson, Michelle S. Fortier, Robert J. Vallerand, Nathalie M. Briére, and Marc R. Blais

A new measure of motivation toward sport has been developed in French, namely the Echelle de Motivation vis-à-vis les Sports. Two studies were conducted to translate and validate this new measure in English. The Sport Motivation Scale (SMS) consists of seven subscales that measure three types of Intrinsic Motivation (IM; IM to Know, IM to Accomplish Things, and IM to Experience Stimulation), three forms of regulation for Extrinsic Motivation (Identified, Introjected, and External), and Amotivation. The first study confirmed the factor structure of the scale and revealed a satisfactory level of internal consistency. Correlations among the subscales revealed a simplex pattern confirming the self-determination continuum and the construct validity of the scale. Gender differences were similar to those obtained with the French-Canadian version. The more self-determined forms of motivation were associated with more positive responses on related consequences. In a second study, the SMS was administered on two occasions and revealed adequate test-retest reliability.