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Table 3 Qualitative themes with illustrative participant quotes

From: Incorporating religion and spirituality into the design of community-based physical activity programs for African American women: a qualitative inquiry

Theme Example quotes
Incorporating religion into a PA program was as favorable I think it’s encouraging [referring to incorporating religion into a PA program] because it gives you a point of reference… (Focus Group # 1, Participant 19)
I would say that that would be extremely encouraging for me [referring to incorporating religion]…I would gravitate more towards that because like seeing the Scripture is like it’s a mental focus. And I would be renewing my mind. (Focus Group # 1, Participant 17)
I would have to say that my spirituality, my faith, has a lot to do with encouraging me to increase my physical activity…reading in the Bible about my body being a temple of the Lord. How I am I to fulfill my purpose on the earth if I’m not healthy to accomplish that? (Focus Group # 1, Participant 1)
Tie it in with Scripture [referring to how to incorporate religion into a PA program], with the whole your body is your living sacrifice, and you’ve got to keep your temple holy… give God praise. (Focus Group # 1, Participant 6)
When I was using my prayer time and exercise time together, then I was physically fit and more mentally fit… For me, yes [I would like religion incorporated into a PA program]… (Focus Group # 2, Participant 20)
Incorporating religion into a PA program was either cautioned or discouraged Each individual is different. So if you have a person who is really dedicated to the Bible versus somebody who takes things with a grain of salt, you’re tiptoeing around. That’s a touchy subject. So that’s something where it depends on the person. (Focus Group # 1, Participant 19)
This sounds weird but if the church across the street was offering a free workout class, I would go but I don’t want to hear about church….Even though it’s on church grounds, I feel like if I like you then I’ll come to your church, but I don’t want you to push the church on me. (Focus Group # 2, Participant 13)
“I’m an atheist so that wouldn’t work [in reference to including religious quotes or passages]. That wouldn’t work for me at all.” (Focus Group # 2, Participant 11)
“To pull people from off the street or whatever and try to throw a class together and then incorporate religion, neh, that might not work as well.” (Focus Group # 2, Participant 13)
“I don’t see a connection…[referring to incorporating religion into a PA program] (Focus Group #3, Participant 9)
Incorporating spirituality into a PA program: a universally accepted approach I’m more spiritual than religious now. So for me, maybe having some aspects of the Bible in there would be offensive to me, but I would be receptive to some type of meditation, music or something like that, something relaxing, versus words. Or even words of affirmation, that would be encouraging as well. (Focus Group # 1, Participant 4)
With spiritually I’m thinking, like I’m meditating or chanting or whatever it is that I’m doing at the time, I feel more self-worth. (Focus Group # 2, Participant 15)
“I would really just enjoy conversation, spiritual related conversation while working out… There are followers of Christ who I literally do not want anything to do with. Then there are people who maybe don’t have a faith or have a faith completely opposite of what I believe in. They’re so goodhearted. It’s like I just want to soak them up. (Focus Group # 2, Participant 24)
I think in one of the other meetings [referring to another focus group session] I was talking about what makes me interested are things like it doesn’t have to be religious, per se, but spiritual… It’s like I’m not just counting how many jumping jacks I’m doing every day. I’m breathing, I’m meditating, or thinking about my higher power. (Focus Group # 2, Participant 22)