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Physical Activity and Self-efficacy in Normal and Over-fat Children

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Objective: To examine the independent and combined association of self-efficacy and fatness with physical activity in 5th grade children. Methods: Participants were 281 students (10.4 ± 0.7 years). Physical activity was assessed using a self-report question. Self-efficacy to be physically active was assessed using a 5-point scale. Body fatness was assessed by bioelectrical impedance. Descriptive statistics, ANOVA, and t-tests were used. Results: There were no differences in reported days of physical activity between boys and girls, and normal-fat and over-fat children. However, children with high self-efficacy participated in significantly more physical activity compared to their low self-efficacy counterparts (3.4 ± 2.0 days vs. 5.4 ± 1.8 days, respectively, p < .001). Conclusions: Only physical activity self-efficacy was related to physical activity, fatness was not.


Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Kinesiology, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 2: Department of Radiology, Division of Sports and Cardiovascular Nutrition, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

Publication date: September 1, 2013

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  • The American Journal of Health Behavior seeks to improve the quality of life through multidisciplinary health efforts in fostering a better understanding of the multidimensional nature of both individuals and social systems as they relate to health behaviors.

    The Journal aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the impact of personal attributes, personality characteristics, behavior patterns, social structure, and processes on health maintenance, health restoration, and health improvement; to disseminate knowledge of holistic, multidisciplinary approaches to designing and implementing effective health programs; and to showcase health behavior analysis skills that have been proven to affect health improvement and recovery.

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