First impressions count: Perceptions of surface-level and deep-level similarity within postnatal exercise classes and implications for program adherence

Mark Beauchamp, William L. Dunlop, Samantha M. Downey, Paul A. Estabrooks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Scopus citations

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine the extent to which perceptions of surface-level (i.e. age, ethnicity, physical condition) and deep-level (i.e. attitudes, beliefs, values) similarity, as assessed shortly after group formation, predict participants' subsequent attendance behaviors within postnatal physical activity classes. Women (N = 136) enrolled in 21 postnatal exercise classes participated in this prospective observational study. Perceptions of surface-level similarity, in particular with regard to other group members' ages, predicted women's subsequent adherence to their respective exercise classes. The results of this study suggest that perceptual similarity may have noteworthy implications for mothers' involvement within postnatal physical activity classes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)68-76
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Health Psychology
Volume17
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2012

Keywords

  • Groups
  • Perceptual similarity
  • Physical activity
  • Postnatal
  • Self-categorization theory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology

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