Social Comparison Information and Exercise Behavior

A variety of behavioral effects are known to occur when individuals engage in social comparison processes (Social Comparison Theory; Festinger, 1954). Individuals may engage in upward comparisons with those who are relatively better off, downward comparisons with those who are relatively worse off, or lateral comparisons with similar others. Typically, objective information (e.g., absolute risk) is provided to individuals in attempts to promote health-protective behaviors, yet little is known about the effect of comparative information. Currently, we are investigating the role that objective feedback versus comparative feedback my play in exercise attitudes and behaviors
Project Manager Renee Magnan