Physical Fitness Compliance in U.S. Army Reservists


Name: Rebecca Shaw-Sisk

Rank: CPT, USA

Organization: University of Illinois

Performance Site: 900th Surgical Hospital, MA; 5035th USARF School, IL

Year Published: 1995

Abstract Status: Final


Many U.S. Army reservists serving in Desert Storm did not meet physical fitness standards. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine variables related to healthy behavior and physical fitness in U.S. Army reservists. Pender's (1996) Health Promotion Model was used to organize the study. Soldiers from five reserve units (N=295) completed questionnaires on drill weekends, including demographic and situational questionnaire; a measure of self-efficacy, the Eating and Exercise Confidence Survey (EECS); and the Health Promotion Lifestyle Profile - II (HPLP-II). Two focus group sessions were conducted in one of the units (N=8) to explore other factors related to health promotion. The HPLP-II score was predicted by being an officer, the stick-to-your-exercise and fat reduction subscales of the EECS, and having fewer hours on a civilian job. Rank and self-efficacy were positive predictors of the nutrition and physical activity subscales of the HPLP-II, with officers scoring higher on nutrition and enlisted personnel scoring higher on physical activity. Focus group participants listed the following motivators for keeping physically fit: support from friends and family, command requirements to exercise during drill weekends, the desire to develop military careers, and the desire to be good role models. Time to exercise was the major barrier to physical fitness. Recommendations focus on interventions to improve self-efficacy.


Final Report is available on NTRL at: