Sex Roles

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A Test of the Expanded Tripartite Dual Pathway Model in Physically Active Korean Men

  • Minsun Lee
  • Hyun-Hwa LeeEmail author
Original Article


The notion that having body-related problems is a female-oriented issue ignores that men also are pressured to have an ideal body, resulting in body image concerns and problems among men. The present research examined the expanded tripartite dual pathway model to explain body image concerns and problems experienced by physically active Korean men. Participants were 427 Korean men in their 20s to 30s who engaged in any regular activity at least once a week. Participants completed an online questionnaire incorporating measures of sociocultural pressures to have a mesomorphic body ideal, internalization, dissatisfaction with muscularity and body fat, muscularity enhancement behaviors, and disordered eating behaviors. The relationships among these variables were assessed using a structural equation model. The results confirmed that sociocultural pressures to be mesomorphic ultimately determine Korean men’s body image perceptions. Compared to previous studies with American and French samples, similar yet distinct associations of sociocultural pressures from the social networking sites of peers and celebrities, real-life friends, and family with body dissatisfaction and body change behaviors via internalization of the mesomorphic body ideal were found among young adult Korean men. Our study contributes to the current literature by confirming the usefulness of the expanded tripartite dual pathway model in understanding Korean men’s body image.


Sociocultural model Mesomorphic ideal Body dissatisfaction Muscularity Disordered eating Men 



This research did not receive any specific grants from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.A Center for Perception and Behavioral Research (CPBR)Incheon National UniversityIncheonSouth Korea
  2. 2.Department of Fashion Design & TextilesInha UniversityIncheonSouth Korea

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