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Faculty/staff perceptions of a free campus fitness facility

Theresa C. Brown (Department of Health & Human Performance, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Oklahoma, USA)
Jennifer Volberding (Department of Health & Human Performance, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Oklahoma, USA)
Timothy Baghurst (Department of Health & Human Performance, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Oklahoma, USA)
John Sellers (Department of Health & Human Performance, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Oklahoma, USA)

International Journal of Workplace Health Management

ISSN: 1753-8351

Article publication date: 2 September 2014

617

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to determine the reason for faculty and staff (N=657; 35 percent males; M age=45.20) at a large Southern university, for either using or not using the free fitness facilities on campus.

Design/methodology/approach

Participants identified themselves as either current (n=306), former (n=213), or never-users (n=138) of the facilities, and completed an on-line self-report qualitative questionnaire asking them to describe their reasons for using or not using the campus fitness facilities.

Findings

Thematic coding revealed that motives fell into three broad categories for all user types: personal (i.e. cost, location, social support), facility-specific (i.e. quality and amount of equipment, class variety, hours of operation), and motivational climate (i.e. feeling valued, welcomed, best effort was emphasized). Current users highlighted positive aspects of each category whereas former and never users described each category as a barrier to their exercise routines.

Practical implications

The identified themes offer campus administration specific suggestions to entice more non-users and former-users to exercise in the fitness facilities available on campus.

Originality/value

While researchers have considered barriers to exercise in past studies, the barriers identified were not specific to fitness facilities. The current work not only examines individuals’ reasons for choosing or not choosing a campus fitness facility for their exercise, but also compares the perspectives of former- and never-users to current-users.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to acknowledge Kat Olson for her assistance with data analysis for this study.

Citation

C. Brown, T., Volberding, J., Baghurst, T. and Sellers, J. (2014), "Faculty/staff perceptions of a free campus fitness facility", International Journal of Workplace Health Management, Vol. 7 No. 3, pp. 156-170. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJWHM-05-2013-0020

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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