Parental/familial factors are important determinants of the physical activity level (PAL) in children and adolescents, but studies rarely prospectively evaluate their relationships. This study aimed to evaluate the changes in physical activity levels among adolescents from Bosnia and Herzegovina over a two-year period and to determine parental/familial predictors of PAL in early adolescence. A total of 651 participants (50.3% females) were tested at baseline (beginning of high school education; 14 years old on average) and at follow-up (approximately 20 months later). The predictors included sociodemographic characteristics (age, gender) and parental/familial factors (socioeconomic status of the family, maternal and paternal education, conflict with parents, parental absence from home, parental questioning, and parental monitoring). Physical activity levels were evidenced by the Physical Activity Questionnaire for Adolescents (PAQ-A; criterion). Boys were more active than girls, both at baseline (t-test = 3.09, p < 0.001) and at follow-up (t-test = 3.4, p < 0.001). Physical activity level decreased over the observed two-year period (t-test = 16.89, p < 0.001), especially in boys, which is probably a consequence of drop-out from the sport in this period. Logistic regression evidenced parental education as a positive predictor of physical activity level at baseline (OR [95% CI]; 1.38 [1.15–170], 1.35 [1.10–1.65]), and at follow-up (1.35 [1.11–1.69], 1.29 [1.09–1.59], for maternal and paternal education, respectively). Parents with a higher level of education are probably more informed about the importance of physical activity on health status, and thus transfer this information to their children as well. The age from 14 to 16 years is likely a critical period for maintaining physical activity levels in boys, while further studies of a younger age are necessary to evaluate the dynamics of changes in physical activity levels for girls. For maintaining physical activity levels in adolescence, special attention should be paid to children whose parents are less educated, and to inform them of the benefits of an appropriate physical activity level and its necessity for maintaining proper health and growth.
|Numero di pagine||17|
|Stato di pubblicazione||Published - 2020|
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