Cross-cultural invariance and validation comparison of the self-efficacy and physical activity enjoyment scales across China and the U.S

Jun Dai *, Han Chen ** and Jiling Liu ***

(*) Shanghai University of Sport, School of Physical Education and Coaching, Shanghai, China
(**) Valdosta State University, Department of Kinesiology and Physical Education, Valdosta, GA, USA
(***) Department of Health & Kinesiology, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX, USA

The purposes of this study were to examine the invariances of short-term scales measuring physical activity (PA) self-efficacy (SE) (S-PASES) and PA enjoyment (S-PACES) across U.S. and Chinese cultures. The study also compared the direct effects of both SE and PA enjoyment on moderate to vigorous PA (MVPA) between two cultures.The U.S. (n = 506, mean age = 14.90 years, 44.5% boys) and Chinese participants (n = 3,578, mean age = 14.2 years, 50.1% boys) were recruited primarily from middle or high schools. Measurement invariances of SPASES and S-PACES were conducted at the configural, full metric, and full scalar levels. Bootstrapping was utilized to compare the direct effects of SE or PA enjoyment on MVPA across cultures. Findings showed that both S-PASES and the revised S-PACES generally demonstrated configural and full metric, but not full scalar, invariances across cultures. SE and PA enjoyment had a direct effect on the participants’ weekly MVPA in all samples. However, SE and PA enjoyment demonstrated significantly greater influence on weekly MVPA for the U.S. sample than for the Chinese samples. The discussion presented the interpretation and application of the findings.

Keywords: Cross-cultural comparison; Direct impact comparison, Measurement invariance, Physical activity self-efficacy scale, Physical activity enjoyment scale