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The influence of bodyweight and weight controllability attitudes on physical activity levels

O'Connell, Eleanor (2020) The influence of bodyweight and weight controllability attitudes on physical activity levels. Undergraduate thesis, Dublin, National College of Ireland.

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Background: Implicit attitudes towards thinness have predicted goal directed behaviour to achieve thinness. A preference for thinness and a belief that weight is controllable is said to contribute to an anti-fat bias. Research has found that holding weight controllability beliefs is associated with physical activity engagement, yet little is known about how implicit attitudes towards bodyweight and weight controllability beliefs both influence physical activity levels. The current research aimed to investigate the influence of both implicit bodyweight attitudes and weight controllability beliefs on physical activity. It was predicted that implicit weight bias and explicit controllability beliefs would influence physical activity levels. Method: A convenience sample of 33 participants recruited through word of mouth and advertisements completed an Implicit Relational Assessment Procedure [IRAP] to measure implicit bodyweight attitudes, an adaptation of Crandall’s original weight controllability subscale, the Godin leisure-time exercise questionnaire and Crandall’s original AFA scale to measure explicit anti-fat bias. Results: A large pro-slim bias with the absence of an anti-fat bias was observed in the sample. Multiple regression analysis revealed that the IRAP slim-positive trial type was a significant predictor of physical activity while weight controllability beliefs were not. A significant positive correlation was observed between explicit anti-fat bias and implicit weight bias.
Conclusions: Emphasising weight controllability factors may not be sufficient to promote exercise. Implicit processes should be considered when examining behavioural choices including physical activity.
Keywords: Bodyweight bias, weight controllability, IRAP, pro-slim attitudes

Item Type: Thesis (Undergraduate)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > Psychology
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > Psychology > Body image
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine > Personal Health and Hygiene
Divisions: School of Business > BA (Honours) in Psychology
Depositing User: Mr Kevin Loughran
Date Deposited: 24 May 2021 10:46
Last Modified: 24 May 2021 10:46

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