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Revista de Salud Pública

Print version ISSN 0124-0064

Abstract

SALES-NOBRE, Francisco Salviano; JORNADA-KREBS, Ruy  and  VALENTINI, Nadia C.. Brazilian girls&039; and Boys&039; leisure practices, physical activity level and physical fitness. Rev. salud pública [online]. 2009, vol.11, n.5, pp.713-723. ISSN 0124-0064.

Objectives Identifying Brazilian adolescents&039; leisure habits, physical activity level and physical fitness related to health. Material and Methods 222 male and 152 female adolescents with ages ranging from 15 to 18 participated in this study. The instruments used were the Inventaire d&039;habitudes du loisir (adapted to Portuguese) and a Scale of Leisure Habits. Physical activity level was measured by the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (short version) and physical fitness was assessed through a battery of questions proposed by the Brazilian Sports&039; Project. The Mann-Whitney U and ANOVA tests were used for frequency-data analysis and inferential statistics. Statistical significance was set at the <0.05 level. Results The results revealed no linear relationship between adolescents&039; sedentary leisure habits and aptitude level related to health, thereby inferring that both male and female adolescents considered themselves to be physically active. However, a higher predisposition towards active leisure habits was found in male adolescents during their free time leading them to enjoy a better aptitude level related to health. Conclusions It was concluded that even adolescents having physically active leisure habits will not necessarily achieve satisfactory results in physical abilities depending on active movement (aerobic fitness and abdominal strength and fitness) and, also, implementing leisure and fitness programmes requires specific activities. Independently of gender, adolescents need physical activity.

Keywords : Health care; population characteristics; physical fitness.

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