2011-2012 Undergraduate Research in Nutrition and Food Science
Background: Exercise classes are gaining popularity among college females. The exercise classes function as a social group to the attendees which offer motivation and encouragement. Exercise classes are offered in local gyms and establishments, and often at low costs. As the classes gain popularity, it is predicted that attendees will experience weight loss or weight maintenance. It is predicted that this will be desirable and a result of increased motivation and likelihood of attendance due to the nature of the exercise classes.
Methods: Data was collected from 90 female college students ranging in age from 19 to 29 at the University of Kentucky. Self-reporting surveys were distributed randomly to students on campus. The survey recorded if the participants had participated in exercises classes and the frequency of doing so. The survey also recorded if weight loss or weight maintenance was experienced as a result. The degree of weight loss/maintenance was recorded, as well as feelings of motivation and increased likelihood. Descriptive and correlation statistics were used with Excel.
Results: The data concluded that 82.2% of the sample had participated in an exercise class. Of these participants, 16.7% participated in exercise classes yearly, 38.9% participated in exercise classes monthly, 24.4% participated in exercise classes weekly, and 2.2% participated in exercise classes daily. The data found that 61.1% of the sample had experienced weight loss or weight maintenance since beginning participation in exercise classes. 61.1% of the sample recorded an increased motivation and 52.2% recorded an increased likelihood to exercise when participating in exercise classes as compared to exercising on their own.
Conclusion: The results suggest a correlation between exercise class attendance and weight loss/maintenance among college age females. The attendees report an increased motivation and likelihood of exercise when participating in the classes.