Publication Date


Document Type


Degree Name

M.S. (Master of Science)

Legacy Department

Department of Family, Consumer, and Nutrition Sciences


Exercise--Illinois--Elgin--Psychological aspects; Goal (Psychology)


Purpose: To measure stages of exercise among employees who set an exercise goal and did not set an exercise goal. Barriers to exercise among stages of exercise were also examined. Design: Insured employees of Sherman Health Systems that set an exercise goal and did not set an exercise goal were sent questionnaires. Subjects were asked to identify their stage of exercise, which included five statements of exercise behaviors. They were also asked to identify personal barriers to exercise from a list of seventeen barriers. The sample size included 256 subjects, a response rate of 55%. Results: A chi-square analysis was used to determine stage of exercise between the group that set an exercise goal and the group that did not set an exercise goal. No significant differences were found in stages of exercise between the two groups. Overall, the average number of barriers to exercise in both groups was 3.62 with work obligations as the most frequently cited barrier. The average number of barriers cited for each group decreased as the stage of exercise increased. An ANOVA was performed on both groups combined to determine if those in a higher stage of exercise reported fewer barriers. A significant difference was found between the means of stage of exercise and barriers reported across all groups. The precontemplation and contemplation stages reported a similar number of barriers, the preparation and action groups were similar, but the maintenance group cited fewer barriers than all other groups. An ANOVA was used to determine differences of stage of exercise and barriers on each group separately. In both groups, differences were found among stage of exercise and average number of barriers. Applications: Stages of exercise may be better utilized if employees set voluntary goals to increase their level of exercise. As the stage of exercise increases, barriers seem to decrease showing that barriers appear to hinder employees who are not exercising on a regular basis. Barriers within each stage of exercise need to be addressed so that they can be overcome. Employers and health promoters should use tracking mechanisms, interventions such as time management strategies and motivation strategies, and stage specific messages to help employees increase and maintain exercise participation.


Includes bibliographical references (pages [47]-49)


v, 49 pages




Northern Illinois University

Rights Statement

In Copyright

Rights Statement 2

NIU theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from Huskie Commons for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without the written permission of the authors.

Media Type