“Who cares about fireworks?” – A Study on Digital Coaching, Gamification and Exercise Motivation

Miralem Helmefalk, Leif Marcussen, Anna Sell

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review

    2 Citations (Scopus)
    6 Downloads (Pure)

    Abstract

    Digital coaching systems offer users support in their physical training through insights and advice based on the individual’s activity data. Often these systems utilize gamification mechanisms to motivate users. In this study we conduct interviews with digital coaching users to understand how digital coaching systems are used to motivate physical activity, what kind of a role gamification plays, and how digital coaching systems should be developed further to better motivate users. We find that data itself is more motivating than gamification mechanisms, that players use data to play their own, internal games; and that data is also used for social purposes. We find that the benefits from digital coaches today are limited and mainly related to accurate exercise tracking and visualization of user data. Gamified elements are used on a low level and not perceived as value-adding by the users; deeper understanding of motivation theory and promoting intrinsic motivation is needed.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of the 53rd Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences
    EditorsTung Bui
    PublisherUniversity of Hawai'i at Manoa
    Pages1266–1275
    ISBN (Print)978-0-9981331-3-3
    Publication statusPublished - 2020
    MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
    EventHAWAII INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON SYSTEM SCIENCES - Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences
    Duration: 7 Jan 202010 Jan 2020

    Conference

    ConferenceHAWAII INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON SYSTEM SCIENCES
    Period07/01/2010/01/20

    Keywords

    • MOBILE device applications
    • Mobile Services
    • Physical Education and Training
    • Physical activity
    • gamification

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