Intrinsic motivation and exercise behavior

Roy Oman, Edward McAuley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study details the relationship between intrinsic motivation and exercise behavior in volunteer subjects (N=109) participating in an eight week aerobic fitness program. Prior to and following the program, the subjects completed measures of intrinsic motivation. Exercise leaders monitored subjects’ attendance at each class, serving as an indicant of exercise behavior. Subjects also indicated their perception of degree of success in the program and their intention to continue exercising post-program termination. Intrinsic motivation was found to be significantly associated with attendance and subjects’ confidence in their intentions to continue exercising post-program. Additionally, subjects’ perceptions of success experienced in the program were moderately related to post-program levels of intrinsic motivation. More successful subjects generally perceived themselves as being more competent, experiencing more enjoyment, and putting forth more effort. Results are discussed in terms of the role of intrinsic motivation as a predictor of exercise program participation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)232-238
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Health Education
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1993

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


Dive into the research topics of 'Intrinsic motivation and exercise behavior'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this