Motivational pathways to leisure-time physical activity participation in urban physical education: A cluster-randomized trial


Grounded in the trans-contextual model of motivation framework, this cluster-randomized trial examined the effectiveness of an autonomy supportive physical education (PE) instruction on student motivation and physical activity (PA). Method: The study comprised six middle schools and 408 students (Mage = 12.29), with primary outcomes of students' autonomous motivation in PE and exercise, PA intention, and self-report PA. Results: The path analysis showed that the intervention had a weak positive effect (γ =.11) on students' perception of autonomy (R2 =.51), which in turn had a moderate positive effect (β =.29) on autonomous motivation in PE (R2 =.51). Students' perception of autonomy during PE had a positive effect (β =.63) on their autonomous exercise motivation (R2 =.44) and autonomous exercise motivation had a positive effect (β =.37) on PA intentions (R2 =.34). Autonomous exercise motivation was an indirect link transferring PE autonomy to PA intentions and participation. Conclusion: The study provides evidence on how motivational experiences in PE transfer to out-ofschool PA.

Publication Title

Journal of Teaching in Physical Education