Publication: Individual & environmental-related correlates of MVPA in Finnish children

Research Impact:  The physical activity (PA) behaviours of young adolescents are influenced by personal and environmental factors. Moreover, more evidence is showing that these patterns are not the same across populations. Therefore it would be worthwhile to examine how these factors differ based on different frequencies of PA.  In this study, a national representative sample of under 5000 Finnish adolescents aged between 11-15yr olds took part in the 2016 Finnish School-age Physical Activity (F-SPA) study. They answered questions on PA, as well as psychological variables, behavioural attributes, social and cultural variables and the physical environment. The purpose of this study was to examine the correlates of these variables with different doses of physical activity frequency.  Multi-level binary logistic regression analyses were used. Almost 30% of these young adolescents reported to meeting the PA guidelines of daily MVPA. An additional 30% reported to take part in 5-6 days of MVPA, over a quarter reported 3-4 days, and slightly over 10% reported 0-2 days of MVPA. Not surprisingly, due to the multiple variables in the regression analyses, there were differences in the correlates across the different groups of PA, suggesting that interventions to promote PA need to consider which is the target group based on existing behaviour and avoid assuming that there is a ubiquitous PA intervention to decrease physical inactivity.

Mehtälä, A., Villberg, J., Blomqvist, M., Huotari, P., Jaakkola, T., Koski, P., Lintunen, T., Mononen, K., Ng, K., Palomäki, S. and Sääkslahti, A., 2020. Individual-and environmental-related correlates of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity in 11-, 13-, and 15-year-old Finnish children. PloS one15(6), p.e0234686. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0234686

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