The rationalization of leisure time - the scarcity of emotional excitement in a health promoting exercise intervention for women

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The aim of this article is to understand how the established biomedical perspective on the body enables and constrains participation in physical activity. Based on a sociological standpoint, an exercise intervention with middle-aged women is analysed through empirical material from observation (N=57), focus groups (N=51) and individual follow-up interviews (N=21). The article finds that spinning[i] is a highly routinized and structured activity that entails a prevailing health promoting control of the emotions to complete and a scarcity of emotional excitement. The article concludes that the biomedical perspective involves a rationalization of leisure time that excludes the emotional excitement usually associated with sports. The emotional body should not be neglected when the (in)active body is problematized in public health. Additionally, participation in long-term exercise would be more likely if couched in an understanding of the activity as an aim in itself.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAnnals of Leisure Research
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)532-549
Number of pages18
Publication statusPublished - 2019

    Research areas

  • The Faculty of Science - Women, Middle aged, Spinning, Physical activity, Leisure time, Emotions, Health, Elias, Exercise intervention

ID: 201227705