Correlates of physical activity in youth: a review of quantitative systematic reviews

Biddle, Stuart J. H. ORCID: and Atkin, Andrew J. and Cavill, Nick and Foster, Charlie (2011) Correlates of physical activity in youth: a review of quantitative systematic reviews. International Review of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 4 (1). pp. 25-49. ISSN 1750-984X


To increase young people's physical activity (PA) levels it is important to understand the correlates of PA in children and adolescents. We sought to identify factors associated with children's and adolescents' PA by reviewing systematic quantitative reviews of non-intervention research. Systematic reviews examining associations between quantitatively measured variables and PA in young people (< 19 years) from 2000-2010 were identified using electronic and manual searches. Nine systematic reviews were identified. Demographic/biological correlates of PA were age and gender. Psychological correlates of PA were positive motivation, positive body image and the existence of barriers to PA. Behavioural correlates of PA were previous PA, sport participation, smoking, and sedentary behaviour. Social/cultural correlates of PA were parental influence and social support, and environmental correlates of PA were access to facilities, distance from home to school, time spent outside, and local crime. The evidence is suggestive of a number of different types of correlates of PA for children and adolescents. Beyond age and gender, though, most are likely to have only small or small-to-moderate effects in isolation and may work best in interaction with other influences. Psychologists must look to social, organisational and community-level correlates in addition to individual correlates. © 2011 Taylor & Francis.

Statistics for USQ ePrint 31870
Statistics for this ePrint Item
Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Files associated with this item cannot be displayed due to copyright restrictions.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Date Deposited: 12 May 2017 02:44
Last Modified: 12 May 2017 02:44
Uncontrolled Keywords: Correlates introduction; Physical activity; Systematic review; Young people;
Fields of Research (2008): 11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1106 Human Movement and Sports Science > 110602 Exercise Physiology
11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111706 Epidemiology
Fields of Research (2020): 42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4207 Sports science and exercise > 420702 Exercise physiology
42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4202 Epidemiology > 420299 Epidemiology not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): C Society > 92 Health > 9299 Other Health > 929999 Health not elsewhere classified
Identification Number or DOI:

Actions (login required)

View Item Archive Repository Staff Only