154,926 registered members
Men and women run for different reasons
[Posted: Mon 19/04/2010 by Deborah Condon www.irishhealth.com]
Men are more likely to run a marathon for competitive reasons, while women run to add meaning to their lives or because of weight concerns, the results of a new study indicate.
Researchers looked at 906 people who were running marathons for the first time. The participants, who were aged 18-72, filled out questionnaires which looked at their motivation for doing their first marathon, their intentions to run another marathon and any differences in motivators for men and women.
Overall, the most frequently cited reasons for running a marathon were achievement of personal goals, such as 'to finish the race in a certain time', self esteem, such as 'to feel proud of myself' and health orientations, such as 'to improve my health.'
However, men were more likely to give personal goal achievement and competition – such as 'to see how high I can place' - as reasons for running a marathon than women.
Women were more likely to run for reasons around psychological coping - 'to improve my mood', or life meaning - 'to feel at peace with the world', or weight concerns.
The participants were also asked whether they planned on doing another marathon. Approximately 70% of women and 79% of men said they intended to run another marathon within the next six months or year.
“The most popular reasons why were 'to lower my finish time' (83%), to include the race as part of a vacation weekend (74%) and to improve upon my training (63%). Over 85% of males overwhelmingly cited to lower their finish time, whereas 79% of females did so,” explained researcher, Elizabeth Loughren of the University of Birmingham in the UK.
The study was carried out at Temple University in Philadelphia. Details of the findings were presented at the British Psychological Society's Annual Conference in Stratford-upon-Avon.
|To join the discussion, register by clicking here|