Psychosocial Characteristics, Perceived Neighborhood Environment, and Physical Activity Among Chinese Adolescents

in Journal of Physical Activity and Health
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This study examined the independent associations between psychosocial factors, perceived neighborhood characteristics, and physical activity (PA) in Chinese adolescents. A cross-sectional study using a convenience sample was conducted in fall 2019 at a high school in Wuhan, China. Sociodemographic data, body weight, height, psychosocial factors, perceptions of neighborhood environment, and PA were collected using questionnaires. Hierarchical linear regression analyses were performed in 4 steps, where step 1 included demographic covariates, step 2 added psychosocial factors into the model, step 3 added perceived neighborhood environmental factors, and step 4 added interaction terms between significant psychosocial and environmental factors. A total of 4027 adolescents were included in analysis. The results of the third model indicated that friends’ support (b = 4.58), friends’ norms (b = 7.16), barriers to PA (b = −10.19), autonomous motivation (b = 4.75), self-efficacy (b = 8.86), the presence of shops/stores nearby (b = 5.79), and the availability of PA resources (b = 6.02) were significant predictors (P < .05) of moderate to vigorous PA. None of the interaction terms were significant in the fourth model. Our results suggest that interventions targeting the PA of Chinese adolescents should take into account the attitudes toward PA, perceived barriers to PA, controlled motivation, perceptions of neighborhood PA resource availability, and perceived neighborhood safety to maximize effectiveness.

Zhang, Fu, Wang, Zhu, Tu, Cheng, Liu, and Li are with the Department of Healthcare Management, School of Health Sciences, Wuhan University, Wuhan, China. Jee is with the Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC, USA. Li is also with the Global Health Institute, Wuhan University, Wuhan, China. Moore is with the Department of Implementation Science, Department of Epidemiology & Prevention, Division of Public Health Sciences, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, Medical Center Boulevard, Winston-Salem, NC, USA.

Moore and Li (jusmoore@wakehealth.edu and rli@whu.edu.cn) are corresponding authors.

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