Where you like to work out may be revealing
A study presented on January 11 at the British Psychological Society’s annual meeting suggests where a person likes to exercise may give important clues to their personality.
For example, extroverted types and people who rely on objective logic and/or routines are more likely to gravitate towards the gym.
On the flipside, creative people — particularly folks who enjoy working with new ideas — plus individuals who focus more on feelings and values as opposed to logic may match better with outdoor activities – like biking and running.
John Hackston, a psychologist and head of the Thought Leadership at OPP, shared the findings with members of the conference.
In case you didn’t know, OPP is owned by CPP, a California based organization owned by the Myers-Briggs Company. If Myers-Briggs sounds familiar, that’s because they produce the famous Myers-Briggs Type Inventory (MBTI).
“The most important piece of advice to come out of this research is that there is not one type of exercise that is suited to everyone,” shared Hackston.
“There can be pressure to follow the crowd to the gym or sign up to the latest exercise fad, but it would be much more effective for them to match their personality type to an exercise plan that is more likely to last the test of time,” Hackston adds.
More than 800 people were included in the study that spanned several countries.
“We were keen to investigate how organisations could help their staff’s development through exercise, finding that matching an individual’s personality type to a particular type of exercise can increase both the effectiveness and the person’s enjoyment of it,” shared Hackston.
Guy Counseling spoke with Dr. Greg Harms, a licensed psychologist in Chicago for his impressions of the research.
“I think the study is interesting but I’m not sure that we can generalize the findings to the general population. That said, the results may help people to better understand their relationship with physical activity,” said Harms.
“Keep in mind that personality is multi-factorial in nature. It’s more involved than where you like to do cardio” he adds.
Source: British Psychological Society