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Physical Activity: What gets more people moving

Leeds Beckett launch new podcast series, Beckett Talks. In this podcast, Professor Jim McKenna from Leeds Beckett’s Carnegie School of Sport talks about his research and how changes in our behaviour impacts on our physical activity.

Beckett talks Jim Mckenna

Professor McKenna’s research idea began when he was a PE teacher and an active coach.  He wondered why people responded differently to physical activity and why some people liked it, some didn’t, some were improving, and some weren’t. He believes the activity wasn’t universal enough for everyone to benefit from it and that sparked his interest in how to operationalise behaviour change for recipients and design programmes according to how humans’ function and how their brains work. His research so far suggests humans are driven by three fundamental needs and if all three of these needs are available in the programmes, they will have a strong chance of working and providing motivation for people to carry on. 

Professor McKenna advises physical activity is not just for the typical sporty individual, but with the correct behaviour change and making it meaningful to the individual, e.g. personal growth, physical activity, there is something for everyone. 

The research so far has enabled Professor McKenna to design programmes that help participants stay interested and motivated. Some of these programmes involve helping teachers to improve the delivery of their classes so pupils perform better.  As well as designing higher scale interventions for whole communities so people become more physically active. 

To find out more about Professor McKenna’s research, listen to the podcast via the following link: 
Physical Activity: What gets more people moving



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