Maternal and Child Health Journal

, Volume 19, Issue 11, pp 2348–2357 | Cite as

Maternal Correlates of Objectively Measured Physical Activity in Girls

  • Alyce T. Barnes
  • Ronald C. Plotnikoff
  • Clare E. Collins
  • Philip J. Morgan
Article

Abstract

Objectives

Given the low levels of physical activity in girls, improving our understanding of the factors associated with girls’ physical activity is important. In particular, exploring maternal correlates of girls’ physical activity for both generations is important, given the paucity of research in this area. The primary aim of this study was to assess maternal correlates of objectively-measured physical activity in girls.

Methods

A cross-sectional design was used to assess 40 girls [mean age 8.8 years; mean body mass index (BMI) z-score = 0.7] and their mothers (mean age 39.1 years; mean BMI = 27.6) prior to an intervention. Maternal correlates of daughters’ accelerometer-assessed physical activity were evaluated. Daughters’ outcomes included: % moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA), counts per minute (CPM) and % sedentary behavior (SED), screen time (mother-proxy) and BMI z-score (objectively measured). Maternal correlates included demographic, anthropometric, behavioral, activity-related parenting practices, and physical activity cognitions. Correlates were examined using regression models.

Results

For daughters’ % MVPA, mothers’ beliefs was significant in the final model (R2 = 0.14; P = 0.01). For daughters’ CPM, mothers’ logistic support (P = 0.03), mothers’ CPM (P = 0.02) and outcome expectations (P = 0.01) were all significant (R2 = 0.24). For daughters’ % SED, mothers’ logistic support (P = 0.02) was significant (R2 = 0.11).

Conclusions for Practice

A number of maternal behaviors, social–cognitive and parenting correlates were found to be significantly associated with daughters’ physical activity. Experimental studies are warranted, targeting mothers as the primary agents of change to increase physical activity among girls.

Keywords

Parent–child relationship Mother Exercise Accelerometer Females 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alyce T. Barnes
    • 1
  • Ronald C. Plotnikoff
    • 1
  • Clare E. Collins
    • 2
  • Philip J. Morgan
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of Education and Arts, Priority Research Centre in Physical Activity and Nutrition, School of EducationUniversity of NewcastleNewcastleAustralia
  2. 2.Faculty of Health, Priority Research Centre in Physical Activity and Nutrition, School of Health SciencesUniversity of NewcastleNewcastleAustralia

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