Adolescent Hookah Pipe Use: Exploring the Role of Basic Psychological Needs and Motivation

Z. Kader*, R. Crutzen, N.V. Roman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Background: Adolescent hookah pipe use is on the rise despite it being a public health concern. Several studies focus on the external determinants of adolescent hookah pipe use but research focusing on the internal factors motivating adolescents to smoke the hookah pipe is sparse. Objective: Drawing on self-determination theory, a contemporary theory of human motivation, this study aimed to explore the basic psychological needs (BPN) and motivation of adolescent hookah pipe users and nonusers in an attempt to explore whether satisfaction or frustration of needs contributes to hookah pipe use. Method: Thirty adolescents, aged 13 to 19 years, participated in the qualitative study using one-on-one semistructured interviews. Each interview was audio recorded, transcribed, and thematically analysed. Results: This study revealed that satisfaction or frustration of BPN, particularly competence and relatedness influences adolescents' decision to smoke or not smoke the hookah pipe. Hookah pipe users experience more needs frustration compared to hookah pipe nonusers. Furthermore, hookah pipe users are more extrinsically motivated to smoke, whereas hookah pipe nonusers are intrinsically motivated not to smoke. Conclusion: The internal factors associated with adolescent hookah pipe use is a relatively new perspective.
Original languageEnglish
Article number00221678211018297
Number of pages27
JournalJournal of Humanistic Psychology
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2 Jun 2021


  • hookah pipe
  • health risk
  • adolescents
  • self-determination theory
  • basic psychological needs
  • motivation


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