Type of Document Dissertation Author Bell, Kenneth W. Author's Email Address firstname.lastname@example.org URN etd-61497-18756 Title The Relationship Between Perceived Physical Competence and the Physical Activity Patterns of Fifth and Seventh Grade Children Degree PhD Department Teaching and Learning Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title Niles, Jerome A. Singh, Kusum Stratton, Richard K. Stremmel, Andrew J. Graham, George M. Committee Chair Keywords
- Perceived Competence
- Physical Activity
Date of Defense 1997-06-30 Availability unrestricted AbstractThis study examined the relationship between the perceptions of
physical competence and patterns of physical activity of 83 5th and 7th grade
children in one school in rural southwest Virginia. Gender and grade level
differences in perceptions of competence and physical activity patterns were
The Perceived Physical Competence Subscale for Children (PPCSC)
(Harter, 1982) was modified to measure children's perceptions of physical
competence (26 self-efficacy questions). Children's patterns of physical activity
were measured by a modification to Sallis & McKenzie's Self Administered
Physical Activity Checklist (SAPAC). Each item on the PPCSC was matched
with an activity on the SAPAC scale. Modifications to both scales were made as
a result of pilot testing performed with the sample population.A significant positive linear relationship was found between children's
perceptions of competence and their amount of physical activity. Significant
positive correlations were also found for a number of self-efficacy measures and
the amount of time children chose to engage in these specific activities.
Significant gender differences were found between boys and girls in
overall perceptions of competence, as well as in a number of self-efficacy
measures. Boys were typically higher is self-efficacy on most physical activities
with the exception of gymnastics, dance, and jump rope. The 7th grade boys
had the highest perceptions of competence, while 7th grade girls were the
lowest of all four groups.
These perceptions of competence were reflected in whether children
chose to participate in an activity or not. Children generally chose to engage in
activities that they perceived themselves competent . There also appear to be
very powerful socio-cultural influences on the types of activities that boys and
girls choose (Lirgg, 1992). Girls were significantly more active in health
enhancing lifetime physical activities such as walking, jogging, and bicycling,
and chose activities of a lower intensity level than boys.
Contrary to the literature, this study found no significant differences in the
total amount of physical activity between boys and girls. It was hypothesized
that the rural setting in which this study was conducted may have influenced this
outcome. No significant differences were found between grades in perceptions
of competence or physical activity time.
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