Physical Activity Research

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Field Project Assignment 1
Name: Cheow Shi Ying Eunice
Course: PSYC 116 Psychology of Physical Activity Student number: 4228960
Course: Bachelor of Science
Submitted: 1 March 2012
Word count: 1084

Physical activities and motivation
Peoples’ awareness of health benefits that physical activities (PA) can bring is generally believed to increase the likelihood of them being more physically active. However, this increase awareness of health benefits does not seem to bring about an increase in PA level among people. (e.g, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2003). Through an evaluation of the Australian National Guidelines for Physical Activity for adults (ANGPAA) via a survey administrated on an adult volunteer, it will be looked into how effectively will this informative pamphlet portraying mainly health benefits, motivates a person to be more physically active.

Interview and Survey
A face to face interview of about 15minutes was conducted on an adult volunteer. The entire conversion of the interview was recorded using voice recording device on a hand phone, and will be available upon request. This interview was administrated in a quiet room to ensure that the interview will not be interrupted. The volunteer was told to read the ANGPAA and encouraged to clarify any doubts she might have before, during and after the interview. After volunteer read the ANGPAA, the reason for doing this survey was being explained to her. It is to find out if the ANGPAA is effective in motivating individuals to start PA, and about how their PA level can influence by different motivation factors. Additionally, the interviewer went through the survey with the volunteer before interview starts, to clarify the interpretation of the survey question if any. The survey questions asked and answers given by the volunteer is attached as Appendix A.

Intrinsic and extrinsic motivation
A person’s desire to participate in PA can be influence by both internal and external factor. They are intrinsic and extrinsic motivation respectively. This pamphlet focuses mainly on extrinsic motivation, which is in this case, is health reasons. There are other external motivation like perceived body image, incentive, social approval and more. A persons’ desire to start participating in physical activities (PA), is largely influence by extrinsic motivation (EM), while the desire to maintain the level of PA is mostly influence by intrinsic motivation (IM).

Effectiveness of the ANGPAA
The ANGPAA place a strong emphasis on how PA can benefit peoples’ health in the long run. It would be effective to motivate individuals who are more extrinsically motivated to participate in PA either to prevent illness or for the health benefits. Also, it is more likely to motivate individuals who are still at the pre-contemplation stage which relies more on EM.

Another emphasis is the awareness that level of PA is self-determine. Guideline 1 ‘Think of movement as an opportunity, not an inconvenience’ shows the attempt to reduce self-perceived barriers of PA, like the perceived difficulties and inconvenience when taking part in PA.

Similarly, subsection of Guideline 2 ‘ways to increase activity’ tried to show individuals that can have control over the amount of PA they do, one example will be, ‘take stairs instead of lift’. Furthermore, this helps to define the venue for PA is not only confine to place with sport facilities, but that any place can be a good venue.

Subsection of Guideline 3 ‘Put together at least 30minutes of moderate intensity PA’ wants to change people’s perception of own incompetence level in regards to PA. Yet, some factors become ineffective with regards to the survey volunteer because of her prior awareness which will be examined next.

Ineffectiveness of the ANGPAA on Motivation Addressed
In the survey, the volunteer identified that...
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