Aerobic exercise in adolescence : self-efficacy and stage of change
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The purpose of this cross-sectional exploratory study was to examine the relationships among self-efficacy, stage of change, and exercise behaviour in a sample of younger (Grade 9) and older (Grade 12) adolescents. A secondary objective of this study was to apply the transtheoretical model of Stage of Change, as a measure of intention to change, in order to discover the applicability of the model to an adolescent cohort in relation to exercise behaviour. This five-stage model is a self-report measure of an individual's readiness to adopt a new behaviour (e.g., regular exercise). The transtheoretical model incorporates Bandura's self-efficacy factor, which is purported to be a predictive measure of exercise behaviour and a covariant of stage. Exercise behaviour was measured with the Physical Activity Scale, and the University of Rhode Island Change Assessment Scale (URleA) was used to measure the stage of change and self-efficacy variables. The results of this study indicated significant differences between younger and older adolescents, and between males and females in their exercise behaviour. No significant differences were found for grade and gender on stage of change as measured by either a single-item question or a continuous measure of stage. Although grade and gender subgroups were not significantly different in their self-efficacy, significant interaction was found in the grade*gender variable.