Ibero-American Journal of Exercise and Sports Psychology

PHYSICAL ACTIVITY IN ADOLESCENCE: THE IMPORTANCE OF FRIENDS’ SUPPORT AND PHYSICAL ACTIVITY LEVELS

Abstract

Pedro Torrado1, João Martins1,2, Pedro Rendeiro¹, Adilson Marques2 e Francisco Carreiro da Costa1,2

This study analyzed the importance of peer support and physical activity (PA) in the PA levels of adolescents from grades 9 to 12 from 16 schools of Lisbon and Setúbal. A questionnaire was completed by 783 adolescents (404 boys; 15.7 ± 1.5 years). It was examined whether the formal, informal and total PA levels, MVPA and DE differed depending on the years of schooling (t-test), the received support (Mann -Whitney test) and friends’ PA perceived (Spearman's Rho test). The 9th graders had significantly higher levels of informal PA than 12th graders (M = 2.7 sessions per week vs. M = 2.1), as well as higher peer support (M = 9.8 vs. M = 9.1). Students with higher support presented higher formal, informal and total PA levels than those with lower support. The influence of friends should be considered in programs to promote active lifestyles.

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