Inmates’ physical activity as part of the health ecology

  • Vidmantas Vaiciulis
  • Saulius Kavaliauskas
  • Ricardas Radisauskas
Research Article


To evaluate the possibilities of physical activity in developing inmates’ healthy lifestyle and social skills. The research, which was conducted in 2009 in Pravieniskes First and Second Correction Houses, was local and cross-sectional using a written questionnaire. The questionnaire consisted of four groups of questions/statements: I — demographic questions; II — questions/statements about inmates’ physical (sports) activities (was created for this study) and III — assessment of inmates’ social skills. And IV — assessment of inmates’ self esteem. Sufficiently physically active inmates (n=185) comprised 57.8 percent of the total number of respondents. Inmates’ physical activity statistically significantly (p<0.05) correlates with their younger age. Secondary education is prevailing in the group of physically active inmates, while primary — lower secondary education predominates in the group of physically inactive inmates (n=135). Only less than 6 percent of inmates have higher education. The average age of physically active inmates is statistically significantly lower than that of physically inactive inmates, 26 and 31.6 years respectively (p=0.01). The analysis of inmates’ contentment with their psychological state and satisfaction with health care services, food quality, and conditions for sports activities showed that physically active inmates are more critical about these factors than physically inactive inmates. Only the contentment with psychological state in physically active inmates is statistically significantly higher than in inactive inmates. Out of eleven social skills assessed in the study, only two skills (ability to initiate conversation with a stranger and sense of responsibility) are statistically significant (p<0.05). The probability that the convicts who have a strong sense of responsibility tend to be more physically active than the inmates who do not consider themselves responsible is 7.4 times higher. The study results showed that self-esteem in physically active inmates is statistically significantly higher that in physically inactive inmates (p=0.033). Low self-esteem was not determined in any inmates.


Social skills Self-esteem Physical activity Inmates 


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Copyright information

© © Versita Warsaw and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vidmantas Vaiciulis
    • 1
  • Saulius Kavaliauskas
    • 2
  • Ricardas Radisauskas
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Environmental and Occupational MedicineLithuanian University of Health SciencesKaunasLithuania
  2. 2.Department of Social Sciences and HumanitiesLithuanian Academy of Physical EducationKaunasLithuania

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