The Need-Relevant Instructor Behaviors Scale: Development and Initial Validation

J Sport Exerc Psychol. 2018 Oct 1;40(5):259-268. doi: 10.1123/jsep.2018-0043. Epub 2018 Nov 7.


Purpose: This article outlines the development and validation of the Need-Relevant Instructor Behaviors Scale (NIBS). Drawing from self-determination theory, the NIBS is the first observation tool designed to code the frequency and the intensity of autonomy-, competence-, and relatedness-relevant behaviors of exercise instructors. The scale also captures the frequency of need-indifferent behaviors.

Methods: The behaviors of 27 exercise instructors were coded by trained raters on two occasions, before and after they received training in adaptive motivational communication.

Results: Findings supported the structural validity and reliability of the scale. The scale's sensitivity to detect changes in frequency and intensity of need-relevant behaviors was also evidenced.

Conclusions: The NIBS is a new tool that offers a unique, tripartite assessment of need-relevant behaviors of leaders in the physical activity domain.

Keywords: exercise; motivation; need support; need thwarting; observation; self-determination theory.

Publication types

  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Communication*
  • Educational Personnel*
  • Exercise / psychology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Motivation*
  • Observation
  • Personal Autonomy*
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Surveys and Questionnaires