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Serious running: factors that lead to awareness, attraction, attachment and loyalty to long distance running

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Commitment to an activity is widely studied in leisure research. Serious Leisure Perspective (SLP) describes characteristics a committed activity participant possesses. The Psychological Continuum Model (PCM) describes the psychological process a person goes through to become committed to a leisure

Commitment to an activity is widely studied in leisure research. Serious Leisure Perspective (SLP) describes characteristics a committed activity participant possesses. The Psychological Continuum Model (PCM) describes the psychological process a person goes through to become committed to a leisure activity. Awareness, attraction, attachment and loyalty make of the four stages of PCM. Both perspectives have been used to describe committed leisure activity participants and commitment to organized recreational events. Research on leisure activity has yet to determine how the individual becomes loyal. Therefore, the purpose of this study is to determine the process in which recreation activity participates becomes loyal and to identify who can be labels as serious within the PCM Framework. Data was obtained from an online electronic survey distributed to participants of four U.S. marathon and half marathon events. A total of 579 responses were used in the final analysis. Path analysis determined the process in which a runner becomes committed. MANOVA is used to determine difference between leisure groups in the four stages of PCM. Results indicate that activity participants need to go through all four stages of PCM before becoming loyal. As knowledge increases, individuals are more motivated to participate. When the activity satisfies motives and becomes a reflection of their identity, feelings become stronger which results in loyalty. Socialization is instrumental to the progression through the PCM Framework. Additionally, attachment is the "bottleneck" in which all loyal activity participants my pass through. Differences exist between serious leisure groups in the attachment and loyalty stages. Those that are `less serious' are not as committed to the activity as their counterparts.

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2014

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Perceptions of nature-based tourism, travel preferences, promotions and disparity between domestic and international tourists: the case of Botswana

Description

This study explores domestic and international tourists' perceptions of nature-based tourism using the North-South conceptualization of nature and the setting up of national parks as a conceptual framework. In addition, using Urry's (1990) tourist gaze, the study assesses tourism promotions

This study explores domestic and international tourists' perceptions of nature-based tourism using the North-South conceptualization of nature and the setting up of national parks as a conceptual framework. In addition, using Urry's (1990) tourist gaze, the study assesses tourism promotions in Botswana from locals' and tourism marketers' points of view. Moreover, the study assesses locals' tourist gaze and compares it with the international tourist gaze. Qualitative methods were used to collect data, including in-depth interviews with local residents, international tourists, and tourism promoters such as government agencies and the private sector. Photo-elicitation interviews were also carried out to help identify the respondents' gaze. Six study sites, including the protected areas of Chobe National Park (CNP), Moremi Game Reserve (MGR), two cities of Gaborone and Francistown, and two urban villages of Palapye and Maun were selected for this study. Results indicate that the way people in the South conceptualize nature is different from the way international tourists do, and this has an impact on visitations to national parks. While for international tourists nature symbolizes recreation, rejuvenation, and an opportunity `to get away from it all', for locals it is seen as a part of everyday life. Furthermore, tourism promotions in the country are geared towards promoting Western tourists' gaze with the local market gaze being totally ignored by the sector. The local gaze is also different from the Western gaze. While for international tourists visiting Botswana the gaze is directed towards wildlife and wilderness, for locals, the gaze is directed towards more traditional destinations, such as farms, as well as more `modern' attractions and `touristic' attractions.

However, it is the Western gaze that is taken into consideration by tourism promoters, thereby questioning the sustainability of an industry that disregards one group over another. The results also indicate that culture and historical events have an impact on visitations to protected areas. Policy implications are discussed.

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2014