Exploring the Relationships Across Recreation Specialization, Leisure Satisfaction, and Happiness: The Case of Korean Hikers

Jaehyun Kim, Yujin Lee, Namyun Kil, Nicholas A. Pitas, Sunhwan Hwang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Prior studies have challenged the notion that recreationists progress along the specialization continuum over time. Using a sample of 443 Korean hikers, this study aimed to determine whether the relationship of specialization to leisure involvement, leisure satisfaction, and happiness is linear or curvilinear. Further, we examined the potential moderating effect of specialization on the relationship between leisure satisfaction and happiness. Results indicated that hikers showed greater specialization as their behavioral involvement increased to a certain point, beyond which specialization decreased. There were also inverted U-shape curvilinear relationships of specialization to levels of leisure satisfaction and happiness. Moreover, there was a significant moderating effect of specialization on the relationship between leisure satisfaction and happiness. Our findings provide deeper insights into the relationship between specialization, leisure satisfaction, and happiness among hikers. Furthermore, managerial implications for public leisure agencies to improve leisure satisfaction and psychological well-being of hikers were discussed.

Original languageEnglish
JournalLeisure Sciences
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2023

Keywords

  • Curvilinear
  • Happiness
  • Korean hikers
  • Leisure satisfaction
  • Recreation specialization

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