Relationships between body image, motivation and physical education (PE) experiences in 13-14 year old boys and girls
AuthorsKerner, Charlotte Lynn
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AbstractResearch has established that body image disturbance is associated with a number of negative physical and psychological health outcomes. It is recognised that body image is subject to situational variability, yet to date, research seems to have overlooked the explicit exploration of the stability of the construct within physical education. With this in mind the overarching aim of this thesis was to explore relationships between body image, perceptions of competence and motivation, with specific attention paid to the influence of the physical education environment upon year nine boys and girls situational body satisfaction. Secondly, the thesis explores the role that these three psycho-social constructs play in transfer of learning. The design of the research was a correlational, repeated measures study conducted across two time points, combined with focus group sessions. Quantitative data collection at time point one consisted of 620 pupils from 37 year 9 physical education classes. Time point two consisted of 461 pupils from 38 physical education classes. At both quantitative time points students responded to a questionnaire package which explored perceptions of competence towards physical education, motivation for physical education and aspects of trait and state body image. Participants at time point one also provided demographic information. Additionally, 159 pupils at time point one underwent anthropometric assessments of body fat and BMI. The findings from the thesis identify that 71%-80% of year 9 boys and girls are dissatisfied with their current body size. It was identified that the majority of variance in situational body satisfaction within physical education can be attributed to factors operating at the pupil and time level, with a smaller yet significant proportion of variance being attributed to between-class factors. Lesson content did not significantly predict variations in body satisfaction scores within physical education and evidence from the focus group sessions suggest that classroom entry factors such as the changing rooms maybe more influential that factors operating within the lesson itself. Results revealed higher levels of body satisfaction within physical education are associated with higher perceptions of competence within physical education, higher levels of autonomous towards physical education, higher transfer of learning scores and lower amotivation towards physical education scores. Collectively, the results of the thesis identify the prevalence of body dissatisfaction in 13-14 year old boys and girls and the potential implications negative body satisfaction can have for experiences of physical education. Findings of the thesis warrant further investigation of how the psychological variables explored relate to further contextual and pedagogical factors.
CitationKerner, C.L. (2013) ' Relationships between body image, motivation and physical education (PE) experiences in 13-14 year old boys and girls'. PhD thesis. University of Bedfordshire.
PublisherUniversity of Bedfordshire
TypeThesis or dissertation
DescriptionA thesis submitted to the University of Bedfordshire in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy
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