Motivational Factors Influencing the Behaviour of J. League Spectators.

Publication Title

Sport Management Review

Publication Date


Document Type



Sport management, soccer, J. League, motivation


Business | Sports Management


The Japanese Professional Soccer League (J. League) began in 1993 and was the first professional soccer league in Japan. After an initial period of strong interest, spectator support for the League has declined. The primary purpose of the current study was to develop a means for measuring selected motives influencing the behaviour of J. League spectators. The second purpose was to then use the measurement scale to examine the impact of these motives on spectator behaviour. Seven motives for J. League spectators were identified in the current study (drama, vicarious achievement, aesthetics, team attachment, player attachment, sport attachment, and community pride), based on prior attempts to measure the motives of sport consumers (e.g., Madrigal & Howard, 1995; Wann, 1995), and an understanding of Japanese culture and J. League spectators. Items were generated to measure each of the seven motives. Confirmatory factor analysis of the scale based on a survey of J. League attenders indicated that seven factors extracted 57% of the variance and were suitable for further analysis. Additional analysis indicated the relative importance of the motives in predicting variance in length of time as a fan and frequency of attendance. Sport attachment predicted the most variance in length of time as a fan, while team attachment was the strongest predictor of frequency of attendance. These results have implications for sport practitioners seeking to improve their marketing efforts and for sport researchers seeking to better understand the motives of sport consumers.