What would it take to persuade you to exercise? A desire to lose weight or improve your figure? To keep heart disease, cancer or diabetes at bay? To lower blood pressure or cholesterol? To protect your bones? To live to a healthy old age?
You’d think any of those reasons would be sufficient to get people exercising, but scores of studies have shown otherwise. It seems that public health experts, doctors and exercise devotees in the media have been using ineffective tactics to entice sedentary people to become, and remain, physically active.
Research by psychologists suggests it’s time to stop thinking of future health, weight loss and body image as motivators. Instead, they recommend a strategy marketers use to sell products: portray physical activity as a way to enhance wellbeing and happiness.