Concept Mapping and Enumerating Strategies to Increase Fat Acceptance in Fitness Centers Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/9019s5183

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  • According to most health organizations, "obesity" (defined as body mass index [BMI] greater than 30) is a world health problem of "epidemic" proportions. The underlying assumption is that weight is a proxy for health. However, obesity prevention and reduction interventions are designed to regulate body weight, rather than improve health. Weight-focused and medicalized approaches to "obesity" largely ignore two important factors. One is that health can be improved independently of weight loss. The second is that significant harms (e.g., stigma, discrimination, negative attitudes) are sanctioned toward larger individuals when weight is conflated with health. One way to address these issues is through interdisciplinary and translational research; another is to incorporate stakeholder voices into research. The first manuscript in this dissertation introduces concept mapping (Kane & Trochim, 2007) to the field of kinesiology. The paper advocates that more researchers consider concept mapping, when appropriate to the research question(s), to incorporate the voices of stakeholders into research, with the goal of building the body of translational research. Concept mapping is described, followed by a brief review of kinesiology-related studies, the potential for concept mapping to help build translational and interdisciplinary knowledge, and limitations of the method. The second manuscript implements concept mapping to address a common problem: weight bias in physical activity contexts. Current and past members and employees of fitness centers (N =155) were recruited to brainstorm ideas that could increase positive attitudes toward larger members. Participants then sorted the ideas (n = 49) based on perceived similarity, and rated the ideas (n = 43) on importance, feasibility, and reach. One hundred ideas representing the five broad themes of programming, fitness culture, code of conduct, professional development, and physical environment/amenities emerged. As hypothesized, differences between stakeholder groups were evident. The results are applicable to practitioners in fitness centers and can also be used to design interventions aimed at increasing positive attitudes toward larger members in fitness centers that are positive and self-determined. Overall, the dissertation adds to the field of kinesiology by introducing and discussing an underutilized methodology--concept mapping--that can help design interdisciplinary and translational research, and incorporate the perceptions of stakeholders. The dissertation also demonstrates how to use concept mapping to address a persistent problem in kinesiology. Addressing weight bias in fitness centers can help improve physical activity participation and enjoyment for members of all sizes and increase positive and self-determined attitudes toward larger people.
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  • description.provenance : Submitted by Brian Souza (souzabr@onid.orst.edu) on 2015-06-08T18:23:39Z No. of bitstreams: 2 license_rdf: 1536 bytes, checksum: df76b173e7954a20718100d078b240a8 (MD5) SouzaBrianJ2015.pdf: 958521 bytes, checksum: 5e71f0ea10ba699185b438325c2211d5 (MD5)
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