Family and individual predictors and mediators of adolescent physical activity
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Department of Child and Adolescent Health, Institute of Mother and Child, Warsaw, Poland
Submission date: 2016-07-19
Final revision date: 2016-09-13
Acceptance date: 2016-09-13
Online publication date: 2017-06-13
Publication date: 2017-05-29
Health Psychology Report 2017;5(4):333–344
In recent years, many reviews of research have demonstrated that the correlations between the physical activity of children and their parents are not as obvious as was once believed. Family factors constitute determinants of children’s physical activity; however, this influence can be mediated by other factors. The aim of the analyses was to examine the mechanisms of the relationships between parental and individual factors: to examine whether parental modelling of physical activity and parental support are direct and indirect predictors of children’s physical activity and whether self-efficacy is a mediator of these relationships.

Participants and procedure
Data from 1,287 Polish adolescents aged 14 to 18 were analysed. The study used questions and scales regarding perceived parental modelling of physical activity (perceived parental physical activity and joint activities), received parental support, and self-efficacy, moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and vigorous physical activity (VPA) of adolescents. Statistical analyses included partial correlations, regression analyses and structural equation modelling.

It was found that self-efficacy, support, gender and parental modelling are independent predictors of physical activity in adolescents; the strongest predictors are self-efficacy and support. Support was a mediator of the relationship between modelling and physical activity and between modelling and self-efficacy. Self-efficacy was a mediator of the relationship between support and physical activity.

Parental physical activity, as well as parents’ engagement in joint activity and children’s activity, strengthens self-efficacy in adolescents and predisposes young people to maintain physically active behaviour.
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