Behaviour change and motivation in physical activity & health

In 2020, 54% of adults in Scotland were not achieving the minimum levels of physical activity, based on our government guidelines.

Sadly, this leaves people more vulnerable to a wide range of chronic conditions, denying them the many benefits and protective effects of physical activity, such as: coronary heart disease, obesity and type 2 diabetes, mental health problems and social isolation.

Living more active lives also provides cost savings for our NHS, increased productivity in the workplace, and reductions in congestion and reduced air pollution through active travel.

Who wouldn’t want these benefits?

Regular physical activity is unarguably an easy route to a healthy life … if only all of us were reliably motivated to do what we know we should do … more often!

In our programmes, we recognise the complexity of human behaviour and place great emphasis on supporting our students to understand contemporary theoretical models of behaviour change and human motivation, and importantly, how to apply this knowledge through a range of techniques and approaches that motivate adherence to exercise.

For example, we teach and assess our students in a counselling approach (Motivational Interviewing) to ensure they can have conversations that compassionately support the motivation, confidence and autonomy that people need to meet complex health goals.

We also place a spotlight on understanding and addressing these issues in underserved populations in our country.

Learn more about our BSc Physical Activity and Health program.

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