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Dissertation

Social support variables and gender in exercise maintenance

15 December 2000

Abstract

The present study investigated the role of social support types and gender in the
maintenance of an exercise regimen. Psychological benefits of exercise and possible reasons for attrition from exercise programs are discussed. Six specific types of social support as outlined by the Social Provisions Scale (Russell & Cutrona, 1987) were assessed. It was hypothesized that there would be differences in different types of support as a function of sex and group (maintainers and non-maintainers). A two way analysis of variance was done for each support type. Results suggest a gender difference for individuals that are not in a maintenance pattern of exercise. Men non-maintainers were more likely to seek out. opportunities to nurture others in their exercise environments. There was also a trend for female non-maintainers to perceive greater attachment support in their exercise environments. No significant gender differences were found among exercise maintainers. Results are discussed in light of sample makeup.


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