Exercise Self-Efficacy and Physical Activity Status of Gyms and Outdoor Based Group Fitness Program Participants in Nairobi City County, Kenya
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Health benefits of being physically active are well documented and accepted as a remedy for many non-communicable diseases (NCDs). Yet many people are reluctant to make lifestyle adjustments to adopt available fitness programs sustainably. This study assessed the Exercise Self-Efficacy (SEE) and Physical Activity (PA) status among young adults in Nairobi County who participate in Gym Based Group Fitness Programs (GBGFPs) and the Outdoor Based Group Fitness Programs (OBGFPs). Objectives were; to assess and compare SEE and PA status between gym and outdoor based group fitness program participants and to compare the efficacy of the two programs across socio-demographic characteristics. Reviewed research enlightens on health fitness components and physiological effects of the two programs but limited on PAS and SEE. A cross-sectional analytical survey research design was used. Stratified random sampling assisted obtain 341 respondents. The study used Global Physical Activity Questionnaire (GPAQ) and SEE questionnaire. SPSS version 22 analysed data. Individual scores were summarized into percentages means and standard deviations. Cross tabulations for analysis of nominal level data to establish the physical performance in relation to gym and outdoor program. Chi square tested the demographic relationship of participants in gym and outdoor program. SEE was computed for each participant as a mean of the 11 items responses provided under the 3 Likert scale questionnaire to obtain an interval scale index after which independent sample t- test was done to determine the difference between the gym and outdoor program participants. Descriptive statistics showed that the gender distribution was 37.6%, 62.4% male and female respectively with 45.6%, 54.4% outdoor and gym participants respectively. The age was categorical with 23.8% 26-30 year-olds being the highest and 18.2% 36-40 year-old being the smallest group. The marital status was marked by married respondents being highest at 47.9% and divorced respondents lowest at 1.8%. Independent sample t- test was run to compute the mean differences as well as to test the difference in relation to 0.05 significance level for the rest of interval data. The Mean ±, Standard Deviation for exercise time for Outdoor and Gym based group fitness program was 2.42, ±0.459 and 2.18, ±0.485 respectively which showed more time was spent by outdoor participants than gym participants in PA. After assessing and comparing SEE using t-test a significance difference was observed between outdoor and gym participation on SEE at t(338)=-4.527,p<.000. Physical activity status first 3 categories namely (activity at work, travel/cycle and recreational activity showed a significant difference between outdoor and gym participation at t(240)=-7.562,p<.000, t(313)=-6.176,p<.000 and t(295)=-6.273,p<.000 respectively. However the fourth category sedentary behaviour showed no significant difference between the outdoor and gym participants at t(338)=-109,p<.913 . Relationship between mode of training and social-demographic status showed a significant relationship between both gym and outdoor participants, age and marital status at χ (4) = 82.513, p<.000, χ (3) = 9.158, p<.027 respectively. Gender against mode of training showed a no significant relationship between outdoor and gym program participants at χ (1) = 0.280, p<.597. The findings of this study inform and advocate for more efficacious fitness programs and bring more knowledge to the different socio-demographic classes on the need to indulge and sustain fitness. They will also greatly assist design more appropriate interventions in the world of fitness harnessing the benefits of outdoor and gym based programs.