What is it about?

Based on self-determination theory, this study explored the predictive strengths and relative importance of basic psychological needs (BPNs; i.e., autonomy, competence, and relatedness) in physical education in physical, cognitive, and psychological outcomes among Hispanic boys and girls. Specifically, this study sought to answer two research questions: (a) Which of the three BPNs would significantly predict cardiorespiratory fitness, effort in PE, and general well-being among Hispanic boys and girls after controlling for BMI? and (b) What was the relative importance of the three BPNs in predicting each adaptive outcome within gender and between genders?

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Why is it important?

As one of the fastest-growing ethnic groups aged under 18 in the United States, Hispanic school-aged children represent 24.4% of the population. Because this population is vulnerable to the risk of health problems, more research is warranted to understand Hispanic children’s physical and psychosocial outcomes and develop effective strategies to promote their health and wellness. Our findings showed that (a) competence was the most important basic psychological need in predicting effort and well-being among both boys and girls; (b) relatedness predicted only well-being among boys, but both effort and well-being among girls; and (c) autonomy did not predict any outcomes.


I enjoyed the opportunity to collect data from a group of Hispanic children mostly from lower SES families. Understanding their experiences and lifestyle really helps provides a foundation to do the writing for this project.

Dr Tsz Lun (Alan) Chu
University of Wisconsin-Green Bay

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Predictive Strengths of Basic Psychological Needs in Physical Education Among Hispanic Children: A Gender-Based Approach, Journal of Teaching in Physical Education, February 2019, Human Kinetics, DOI: 10.1123/jtpe.2018-0126.
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