Associations between the perceived social and physical environment and self-reported moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and screen time (ST) were examined among adolescents in four European countries.
Representative samples were surveyed with standardised methodologies. Associations between environmental variables and meeting MVPA recommendations and tertiles of ST were tested in gender-specific logistic regression models. Moderation by country and country-specific relationships were also examined.
The most consistent findings across countries were found for the significant associations between neighbourhood social environment and MVPA in both boys and girls. Significant associations with the physical environment varied more between countries and by gender. The most consistent negative associations with ST were found for the social environmental variable of having parental rules for spending time outside the home.
The present findings provided evidence for the generalisability of the associations between environmental correlates and MVPA across four European countries. The findings show clear differences in correlates for MVPA and ST. Further research is needed to better understand the unique aspects of the social and physical environment which explain each of the two behaviours.
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Health Behaviour in School-aged Children (HBSC) is an international study carried out in collaboration with WHO/EURO. The International Coordinator of the 2013/14, survey was Professor Candace Currie at the University of St Andrews, Scotland and the Data Manager was Professor Oddrun Samdal at the University of Bergen, Norway. The study was supported from European Regional Development Fund-Project “Effective Use of Social Research Studies for Practice” (No. CZ.02.1.01/0.0/0.0/16_025/0007294) and the Czech Science Foundation under reg. No. 18-24977S.
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The authors declare that they have conflicts of interest and study was in compliance with ethical standards.
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Bucksch, J., Kopcakova, J., Inchley, J. et al. Associations between perceived social and physical environmental variables and physical activity and screen time among adolescents in four European countries. Int J Public Health 64, 83–94 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00038-018-1172-9
- Screen time
- Physical activity
- Social and physical environment
- European countries
- Health Behaviour in School-aged Children (HBSC) study