A1 Journal article (refereed)
The relationships among motivational climate, perceived competence, physical performance, and affects during physical education fitness testing lessons (2022)

Huhtiniemi, M., Sääkslahti, A., Tolvanen, A., Watt, A., & Jaakkola, T. (2022). The relationships among motivational climate, perceived competence, physical performance, and affects during physical education fitness testing lessons. European Physical Education Review, 28(3), 594-612. https://doi.org/10.1177/1356336x211063568

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editors: Huhtiniemi, Mikko; Sääkslahti, Arja; Tolvanen, Asko; Watt, Anthony; Jaakkola, Timo

Journal or series: European Physical Education Review

ISSN: 1356-336X

eISSN: 1741-2749

Publication year: 2022

Publication date: 13/12/2021

Volume: 28

Issue number: 3

Pages range: 594-612

Publisher: SAGE Publications

Publication country: United Kingdom

Publication language: English

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/1356336x211063568

Publication open access: Openly available

Publication channel open access: Partially open access channel

Publication is parallel published (JYX): https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/78992


Despite the prominence of fitness testing in school physical education (PE), there is a sparsity of research examining the antecedents of students’ affective experiences during fitness testing lessons. This study aimed to investigate the associations among task- and ego-involving motivational climates, perceived physical competence, physical performance, enjoyment, and anxiety during two different types of PE fitness testing lessons. Altogether, 645 Finnish students from Grade 5 (50% boys, Mage = 11.2, SD = 0.36) and Grade 8 (47% boys, Mage = 14.2, SD = 0.35) participated in two fitness testing lessons with different content (lesson 1: 20-meter shuttle run test and a test of flexibility; lesson 2: curl-ups, push-ups, 5-leaps, and a catching-throwing combination test). Students’ experiences were collected using short questionnaires immediately after the lessons. Structural equation modeling was applied to examine the direct and indirect associations among study variables. Results indicated that task-involving climate and perceived competence increased students’ enjoyment and decreased their anxiety levels whereas ego-involving climate had no effect on students’ enjoyment but increased their anxiety levels. In addition, students’ actual physical performance as a mediator between motivational climate and affects, or as a direct predictor of affects, was limited. Strategies advancing task-involving motivational climate and students’ perception of competence should be employed to increase enjoyment and decrease anxiety during PE fitness testing lessons.

Keywords: school-age children; physical fitness; physical education (school subject); performance (capacity); testing; ambience; motivation (mental objects); motivational climate; pleasure; know-how; comfort; performance (coping); anxiety; health education; health promotion

Free keywords: school-aged children; enjoyment; anxiety; physical fitness; structural equation modeling

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Ministry reporting: Yes

Reporting Year: 2022

Preliminary JUFO rating: 1

Last updated on 2022-20-09 at 13:27