Physical Activity Levels for Girls and Young Adult Women versus Boys and Young Adult Men in Spain: A Gender Gap Analysis

MAYO, Xian, LUQUE-CASADO, Antonio, JIMENEZ GUTIERREZ, Alfonso and DEL VILLAR, Fernando (2020). Physical Activity Levels for Girls and Young Adult Women versus Boys and Young Adult Men in Spain: A Gender Gap Analysis. Sustainability, 12 (15), e6265.

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Despite that the health benefits of physical activity (PA) are clear, during the last years, a noticeable plateau or slight increase in physical inactivity levels in Spanish adolescents and young adults has been reported. In addition, there seems to be a progressive reduction of the total PA performed with age in both adolescent and young women as well as adult men. We aimed to analyze these changes with age in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) in a sample of Spanish adolescents and young adults within the age range of 15−24 years old (n = 7827), considering the gender and using the short form of the International Physical Activity Questionnaire. For that, we implemented a two-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) considering both the gender and the age group surveyed. Generally, our findings showed a reduction in the daily MVPA performed from adolescence to young adulthood in Spaniards. Within these reductions, girls reduce their PA levels at a different age and pace in adolescence and young adulthood in comparison to boys. Though girls were less active than boys in the 15−18 year age range, these differences were no longer significant at older ages. Our results point out the necessity of implementing different policy approaches based on gender (i.e., for girls and young women), since reductions in the MVPA performed occur at particular ages and paces in comparison to boys and young men. This difference indicates that the traditional approach during adolescence and young adulthood is inadequate for tackling physical inactivity without considering the population’s gender.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: ** From MDPI via Jisc Publications Router ** Licence for this article: **Journal IDs: eissn 2071-1050 **History: published 04-08-2020; accepted 31-07-2020
Uncontrolled Keywords: physical inactivity, adolescence, International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ)
Identification Number:
Page Range: e6265
SWORD Depositor: Colin Knott
Depositing User: Colin Knott
Date Deposited: 06 Aug 2020 10:18
Last Modified: 17 Mar 2021 23:48

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