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Bridging the intention–behaviour gap: Planning, self-efficacy, and action control in the adoption and maintenance of physical exercise


Sniehotta, Falko F; Scholz, Urte; Schwarzer, Ralf (2005). Bridging the intention–behaviour gap: Planning, self-efficacy, and action control in the adoption and maintenance of physical exercise. Psychology & Health, 20(2):143-160.

Abstract

Although some people may develop an intention to change their health behaviour, they might not take any action. This discrepancy has been labelled the “intention–behaviour gap.” Detailed action planning, perceived self-efficacy, and self-regulatory strategies (action control) may mediate between intentions and behaviour. This was examined in a longitudinal sample of 307 cardiac rehabilitation patients who were encouraged to adopt or maintain regular exercise. At the first time point, the predictors of intention and intention itself were assessed. Two months and four months later, the mediators and outcomes were measured. Results confirmed that all the three factors (planning, maintenance self-efficacy, and action control) served to mediate between earlier exercise intentions and later physical activity, each of them making a unique contribution. The results have implications for research on the “intention–behaviour gap,” and indicate that planning, maintenance self-efficacy and action control may be important volitional variables.

Although some people may develop an intention to change their health behaviour, they might not take any action. This discrepancy has been labelled the “intention–behaviour gap.” Detailed action planning, perceived self-efficacy, and self-regulatory strategies (action control) may mediate between intentions and behaviour. This was examined in a longitudinal sample of 307 cardiac rehabilitation patients who were encouraged to adopt or maintain regular exercise. At the first time point, the predictors of intention and intention itself were assessed. Two months and four months later, the mediators and outcomes were measured. Results confirmed that all the three factors (planning, maintenance self-efficacy, and action control) served to mediate between earlier exercise intentions and later physical activity, each of them making a unique contribution. The results have implications for research on the “intention–behaviour gap,” and indicate that planning, maintenance self-efficacy and action control may be important volitional variables.

Citations

319 citations in Web of Science®
347 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Language:English
Date:2005
Deposited On:11 Dec 2014 11:43
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 18:37
Publisher:Taylor & Francis Inc.
ISSN:0887-0446
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1080/08870440512331317670

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