Exercise Imagery Use in Recreational Weightlifters

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name



Graduate School of Professional Psychology

First Advisor

Jamie Shapiro

First Committee Member

Ian Palombo


Exercise imagery, Visualization, Weightlifting, Appearance, Technique, Energy

Publication Statement

Copyright is held by the author. Permanently suppressed.


The current study explored exercise imagery use in recreational weightlifters. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 7 participants. Participants were recreational weightlifters, recruited via convenience sampling. All participants had to be over the age of 18, averaging three or more times a week of lifting weights for more than a year. Participants were not involved in a structured exercise program, training for sport or competition of any kind. Interviews explored current exercise routines, the participants’ knowledge of imagery, and their current use of imagery. Results revealed that all participants utilized at least one form of exercise imagery (appearance, technique, or energy) either before or during their workout in different capacities. Participants expressed that through their previous sport background and their particular current goals, they utilize exercise imagery for weightlifting whether it has become subconscious or intentional. Participants’ interviews revealed that they all implemented technique exercise imagery. Energy imagery was used second most frequently and appearance imagery was used least frequently. The findings may help educate professionals in the strength and conditioning and sport fields along with athletes and recreational weightlifters on the implementation of exercise imagery and its use for performance enhancement.


37 pages

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