Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to determine the reason for faculty and staff ( N =657; 35 percent males; M age =45.20) at a large Southern university, for either using or not using the free fitness facilities on campus. Design/methodology/approach – Participants identified themselves as either current ( n =306), former ( n =213), or never‐users ( n =138) of the facilities, and completed an on‐line self‐report qualitative questionnaire asking them to describe their reasons for using or not using the campus fitness facilities. Findings – Thematic coding revealed that motives fell into three broad categories for all user types: personal (i.e. cost, location, social support), facility‐specific (i.e. quality and amount of equipment, class variety, hours of operation), and motivational climate (i.e. feeling valued, welcomed, best effort was emphasized). Current users highlighted positive aspects of each category whereas former and never users described each category as a barrier to their exercise routines. Practical implications – The identified themes offer campus administration specific suggestions to entice more non‐users and former‐users to exercise in the fitness facilities available on campus. Originality/value – While researchers have considered barriers to exercise in past studies, the barriers identified were not specific to fitness facilities. The current work not only examines individuals’ reasons for choosing or not choosing a campus fitness facility for their exercise, but also compares the perspectives of former‐ and never‐users to current‐users.
International Journal of Workplace Health Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: Sep 2, 2014
Keywords: Health promotion; Workplace health; Motivation (psychology); Exercise; Workplace wellness