Understanding Behavioral Regulation Towards Physical Activity Participation: Do We Need a Paradigm Shift to Close the Gender Gap?

LUQUE-CASADO, Antonio, MAYO, Xian, LAVÍN-PÉREZ, Ana Myriam, JIMENEZ GUTIERREZ, Alfonso and DEL VILLAR, Fernando (2021). Understanding Behavioral Regulation Towards Physical Activity Participation: Do We Need a Paradigm Shift to Close the Gender Gap? Sustainability, 13 (4), e1683.

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Open Access URL: https://www.mdpi.com/2071-1050/13/4/1683 (Published version)
Link to published version:: https://doi.org/10.3390/su13041683


Despite the well-established benefits of physical activity for both physical and psychological health, current inactivity prevalence continues to be particularly alarming among adolescents and youth. Equally of great concern is the existence of striking gender differences that represent a serious threat to reverse this problem. We aimed to analyze gender-related differences in self-reported physical activity and motivational regulations in a population-based sample of Spaniard adolescents and young adults (n = 9949). To this aim, we used an explanatory mixed-methods design by integrating quantitative and qualitative data using self-determination theory (SDT) as an analytic framework. Our results reported a gender imbalance in physical activity levels and autonomous forms of motivation to the detriment of adolescent girls and young women. An earlier and steeper age-related decline both in activity and volitional types of motivation was observed in girls. Qualitative outcomes depicted a range of key cognitive and contextual mechanisms undermining the degree to which physically active behaviors are volitionally undertaken among women. These findings highlight the importance of implementing gender-sensitive policy approaches and may have a useful application in suggesting how contextual factors and exercise settings can be addressed to foster volitional types of physical activity engagement in adolescent girls and young women.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: ** From MDPI via Jisc Publications Router ** Licence for this article: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/ **Journal IDs: eissn 2071-1050 **History: published 04-02-2021; accepted 02-02-2021
Uncontrolled Keywords: physical activity, gender, motivation, adolescence, young adults, self-determination theory, quantitative, qualitative
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.3390/su13041683
Page Range: e1683
SWORD Depositor: Colin Knott
Depositing User: Colin Knott
Date Deposited: 09 Feb 2021 16:57
Last Modified: 17 Mar 2021 15:17
URI: https://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/28121

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