Predictors of leisure-time physical activity in adult Native American women
Cuaderes, Elena T.
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A high prevalence of obesity, contributing to non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus and cardiovascular disease, has been demonstrated in Oklahoma Indians. Studies on the health of Native Americans that examine motivation for habitual exercise in this population are nonexistent. In order to establish successful exercise programs for Oklahoma Native American women, it is necessary to investigate motivators for leisure-time physical activity. The purpose of this study was to determine whether age, body mass index (BMI), self-motivation (SM), physical self-efficacy (PSE), and perceived exercise benefits and barriers to exercise (PBBE) predicted exercising behavior in adult Native American women. The Leisure-Time Physical Activity Model, developed by the investigator was used as the framework for this study. It was hypothesized that: (1) age, BMI, SM, PSE, and PBBE predict exercising behavior, and (2) women who exercise are younger, possess lower body fat, higher self-motivation and higher physical self-efficacy and perceive less barriers and more benefits to exercise than women who do not exercise. Logistic regression was used to test the hypotheses and a convenience sample of 257 adult women, aged 21–81 years, from the Oklahoma City Indian Clinic served as participants for this research. Results of this study show that only body mass index (χ2 = 6.5522, p = .0105), self-motivation (χ2 = 4.8543, p = .0276), perceived barriers (χ2 = 8.3701, p = .0038) and perceived benefits (χ2 = 11.4558, p = .0007) predict leisure-time physical activity behavior. The logistic regression model indicates that exercisers are more likely to possess lower body mass values, (OR = .9462), possess higher self-motivation (OR = 1.0182), perceive more benefits to exercise (OR = 1.0486) and perceive less barriers to exercise (OR = .9190) than nonexercisers. Goodness-of-fit tests reveal that the model is a good fit of the data. The results of this study suggest that exercise programs for adult Native American woman should include interventions that will increase their self-motivation and allow them to realize the benefits of exercise, including weight loss.