Academic journal article Journal of Physical Education and Sport

Examination of the Relation between the Planned Behavior Theory and the Attitudinal Loyalty to Recreational Dance Activities

Academic journal article Journal of Physical Education and Sport

Examination of the Relation between the Planned Behavior Theory and the Attitudinal Loyalty to Recreational Dance Activities

Article excerpt

Introduction

Recreational dance activities constitute a physical activity which attracts the interest of many people. The increased participation to such activities is related to psychological and social factors and, consequently, it has become the subject of numerous researches (Bebetsos & Goulimaris, 2014; Filippou, 2015a; Papaioannidou, Derri & Filippou, 2015; Voutsina & Goulimaris, 2016; Yfantidou, Costa & Michalopoulou, 2008). The various benefits deriving from participating in such physical activities effect both one's psychological situation and his/her physical condition (Genti, Goulimaris & Yfantidou, 2009; Goulimaris, Mavridis, Genti & Rokka, 2014). Lately, recreational dance activities have been approached from various aspects (Goulimaris, 2015; Goulimaris, Koutsouba & Giosos, 2008; Filippou, 2014; Filippou, 2015b; Papakostas Goulimaris & Douma, in press; Vernadakis et al. 2012; Vernadakis et al. 2015). The increased number of participants has created a significant job market for the professionals of the field and an important number of active or latent customers. Thus, recreational dance activities include a specific amount of services, which are offered to the participants in order to satisfy and increase their interest in them.

Theoretical Framework

Costumers' loyalty is particular importance for the recreational institutions because it is connected to the achievement of strategic targets, the creation of a positive reputation, the increase of profits, the promotion of life quality, the development of marketing relations and the preservation of customers (Alexandras et al., 2008; Rundle-Thiele & Mackay, 2001; Nassis et al 2007; Zeithaml & Bitner, 2006; Tsitskari, Antoniadis, & Costa, 2014; Iwasaki & Havitz, 2004). In the field of offered services, loyal customers is a powerful competitive advantage (Alexandris, Dimitriadis & Kasiara, 2001). In the field of recreation, preserving customers is less expensive than attracting new ones (Tsitskari, Antoniadis, & Costa, 2014; Zeithaml & Bitner, 2006).

Loyalty is an important concept for marketing and constitutes one of the dimensions of positive behavioral intentions. In literature, the concept of loyalty appears to have two components. Attitudinal loyalty expresses the individual attitude towards a service, the thoughts and sentiments, the positive comments, the knowledge involved and its importance. Attitudinal loyalty also indicates a customer's intention to continue practicing a certain activity. Behavioral loyalty is connected to customers' behavior such as their frequency of participating, the duration and the money spent (Alexandras et al., 2008; Iwasaki & Havitz, 2004; Kim & Scott, 1997; Nassis, et al 2007; Funk & Pastore, 2000; Avourdiadou & Theodorakis, 2014; Dick & Basu, 1994).

Frequently, the concept of psychological commitment is used to describe the attitudinal component of loyalty (Alexandras, et al. 2004; Park & Kim, 2000; Tsitskari, Antoniadis, & Costa, 2014). Costumers' loyalty is a multi-dimensional term, which is affected by the behavioral and psychological sides of a customer.

There is an important amount of researches on loyalty in the field of services. In the sector of recreation and sports, the concept of loyalty has been the subject of numerous researchers (Alexandris et al., 2008; Alexandris, Kouthouris & Meligdis, 2006; Alexandris et al, 2009; Avourdiadou, & Theodorakis, 2014; Gladden & Funk, 2001; Kolbe & James, 2002; Mahony, Madrigal & Howard, 2000; Nassis, et al 2007; Filo, Funk & Alexandris, 2008; Funk & James, 2006; Papadopoulos, Theodorakis & Alexandris, 2004; Tsitskari, Antoniadis, & Costa, 2014; Yuksel & Yuksel, 2007).

The planned behavior theory claims that our actions are motivated by specific intentions, which constitute our "behavioral intention". The intensity of our intentions is usually analogical to our determination to act (Ajzen & Fishbein, 1980). …

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