Health, Exercise, and Sports Sciences ETDs


David Lovett

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The purpose of this study was to explore the motivational factors of triathletes in order to better understand the specific motives that drive them to consume the product/service of and participate in triathlon events. The study looked specifically at participants in sprint triathlon, the shortest of the three main triathlon competitions. The study utilized a slightly modified Motives of Marathoners Scale (MOMS), an instrument developed by Masters, Ogles, and Jolton (1992), to better understand the reasons for triathlon involvement. The study focused on differences based on gender, the triathletes self-reported level of activity, and their previous experience in triathlon events. Participants in this study included 165 triathletes (male=98, female=67) from two sprint triathlons in Texas and one sprint triathlon in Florida. Separate factorial ANOVAs were performed on each of the dependent variables of interest with gender, age, level of activity, and level of experience as between-subjects factors and the two-way interactions of gender with age, level of activity, and level of experience. Results showed significant (p<.05) gender differences in the motives of Affiliation (females higher than males), Life Meaning (females higher than males), and Personal Goal Achievement (females higher than males). Results also showed significant age differences in the motives of Affiliation (20s higher than 30s) and Competition (20s higher than 30s). Motivational differences also existed in triathletes based on levels of activity (competitiveness) and levels of experience. In addition, an interaction between age and gender was found and indicated that self esteem motives differed according to age and gender. A test of simple main effects revealed that females in their 40s had greater Self-esteem scores than males in their 40s. Practical and research implications are discussed.


Triathlon Motives Motivation Sport

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Level of Degree


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Health, Exercise, and Sports Sciences