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Wang, John Chee Keng
Obesity rates are rising worldwide and its associated health problems prompt the need to examine the problem beyond current practices, to use other perspectives to devise more effective physical activity interventions. Physical activity behaviour can be understood through self-determination theory. Current research on motivation suggested that physical activity behaviour has over the years transited from one that is intrinsic in nature to an externally regulated behaviour. At the same time, identity researchers also observed a change in human behaviour to be more fragmented because of technological changes in the society. This thesis puts together a literature review outlining the new environment that we operate in and how that has modified our behaviour from the perspectives of identity theory and self-determination theory. Studies based on identity theory, self-determination theory and combination of the two theories have shown that both theories can be integrated to address the gaps in physical activity intervention. As there are also limited studies on physical activity identity or exercise identity, its measurement, validity and reliability, there is a need to review the foundations of identity theory and develop an adequate, valid and reliable identity scale that can address physical activity behaviour. From an understanding of identity theory and self-determination theory, this thesis also examines the association between identity, self-determination and physical activity behaviour. Lastly, the thesis evaluates the effectiveness of a physical activity intervention through the integration and application of both theories. The thesis aims to understand the identity-motivational influences of physical activity behaviour through three studies.
In the first study, an exercise and sport identity scale (ESIS) was developed and validated using exploratory structural equation modeling (ESEM). A 22-item, 7-factor (importance to identity, private self-esteem, public self-esteem, continuity, uniqueness, exploration and commitment) ESIS was found to have sufficient validity and reliability of an exercise identity scale.
In Study 2, ESIS was further validated with an independent sample using confirmatory factor analysis (CFA). It was further verified that the 22-item, 7-factor ESIS had sufficient validity and reliability. Three second order factors (social identity, personal identity and ego identity) were also confirmed in the ESIS. In the same study, Intrinsic Motivation Inventory (IMI) was validated using CFA and was found to consist of four factors (interest, perceived competency, perceived choice and perceived relatedness). ESIS and IMI were tested for association and significant association was found between identity and motivation, verifying the purpose of the study that the two theories can be used together to examine physical activity behaviour.
Study 3 was an intervention study to examine if modern online social media environment, Facebook, had an influence on the effectiveness of physical activity intervention. Guided by identity theory and self-determination theory, ESIS and IMI were used to measure the changes in the psychosocial state of participants in a ten-week intervention, it was found that a combination of physical activity intervention with social media influence caused a positive change in exercise and sport identity, intrinsic motivation and intensity of physical activity, more than a traditional physical activity intervention.
This thesis also discussed the strengths, limitations and issues surrounding the use of the identity-motivation model in physical activity intervention. In conclusion, the outcomes of the three studies present a potential model to understand physical activity from a psychosocial perspective that is relevant to the technologically driven environment we now live in.
|Appears in Collections:||Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)|
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checked on Apr 21, 2021
checked on Apr 21, 2021
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