Barriers, facilitators, and motives for yoga participation among men

PhD Thesis


Cagas, Jonathan Y.. 2021. Barriers, facilitators, and motives for yoga participation among men. PhD Thesis Doctor of Philosophy. University of Southern Queensland. https://doi.org/10.26192/53g9-6t87
Title

Barriers, facilitators, and motives for yoga participation among men

TypePhD Thesis
Authors
AuthorCagas, Jonathan Y.
SupervisorBiddle, Stuart
Vergeer, Ineke
Institution of OriginUniversity of Southern Queensland
Qualification NameDoctor of Philosophy
Number of Pages456
Year2021
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.26192/53g9-6t87
Abstract

Yoga is a holistic movement practice involving a physical activity rooted in a holistic philosophy of well-being, offering opportunities for physical activity, mind-body integration, personal transformation, and spiritual development. The potential of yoga for health and physical activity promotion is also widely acknowledged by health authorities worldwide. Participation, however, remains relatively low, particularly among men. The purpose of this PhD-by-publication, therefore, was to examine the barriers, facilitators, and motives for yoga participation among men. One review and three primary empirical studies were conducted. Using a scoping review methodology, the first paper established the need to further understand the psychological and social factors that influence or discourage yoga participation among adults in the general population. It highlighted the barriers and facilitators not typically mentioned in conventional physical activities and the under-representation of men in the existing literature, providing a strong justification for the current project. In the second and third papers, qualitative interviews and focus groups were used to collect data from male yoga participants and non-participants who shared their yoga perceptions and experiences. These two papers identified male-specific barriers and facilitators for yoga and described potential strategies to improve yoga uptake and support sustained participation. The final paper, including follow-up analyses, was a cross-sectional survey study. Respondents were 546 male and female yoga participants who completed an online questionnaire on yoga participation motives, engagement in yoga’s philosophical and spiritual dimensions, selected conformity to masculine norm constructs, yoga practice characteristics, and socio demographic information. Using a combination of multivariate analytical methods, this study established that modern yoga participants, including men, do not belong to ii one homogenous participant group. They vary in the manner they perceive yoga and engage in its psycho-spiritual underpinnings. As such, participation motives vary across these participant groups. Collectively, these papers identified perceptions, barriers, and motives related to gender and psycho-spiritual aspects that motivate or hinder men from practicing yoga. While many of the facilitators and barriers were similar to conventional physical activities, several may be specific to yoga. The holistic aspects of yoga, for example, act as both barriers and facilitators for men and need to be studied further. The results of this PhD project point to the need for further studies on men’s experiences in yoga and for additional quantitative work to test whether similar findings are observed in different populations. From the standpoint of promoting yoga, the findings could be useful in creating differentiated promotional messages to attract new participants seeking different outcomes from yoga or when developing context-specific yoga instructional content.

Keywordsyoga, exercise, masculinity, mind­body, men's health, spirituality
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020520107. Sport and exercise psychology
Byline AffiliationsUniversity of Southern Queensland
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