An Analysis of Health Related Information in Canadian Running Magazines: What Motivation and Threshold of Activity is Endorsed?
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Regular physical activity is thought to be associated with better physical and mental health. The Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology (CSEP), in partnership with Health Canada released Canada’s physical activity guide outlining benefits and benchmarks for exercising based on an intrinsic motivation model. Popular magazines can play a crucial role in disseminating related and consistent messages. This study evaluated the prevalence of running-health related information in two Canadian running magazines and the consistency of the information against the Public Health Agency of Canada recommended guidelines. A content analysis of 174 articles over a 12-month period revealed whether articles provided advice, mentioned health risks/benefits in relation to running and any statistics, and referenced health priority terms. The content analysis also looked at whether publications provided consistent information on frequency and duration for running. Overall the publications are providing health–related information in keeping with Canadian public health guidelines and intrinsic models of motivation. The variances in the frequency of prescriptive articles and on the key health terms referred to in the PAG's priorities were not found to be significant.