To help inform policies and programs, a need exists to understand the extent to which Healthy People 2010 objectives for physical activity, physical education (PE), and television (TV) viewing among adolescents are being achieved.
As part of the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System, 5 national school-based surveys were conducted biennially from 1999 through 2007. Each survey used a 3-stage cross-sectional sample of students in grades 9 to 12 and provided self-reported data from approximately 14,000 students. Logistic regression models that controlled for sex, race/ethnicity, and grade were used to analyze secular trends.
During 1999 to 2007, prevalence estimates for regular participation in moderate and vigorous physical activity, participation in daily PE classes, and being physically active in PE classes did not change significantly among female, male, white, black, or Hispanic students. In contrast, the prevalence of TV viewing for 2 or fewer hours on a school day increased significantly among female, male, white, black, and Hispanic students and among students in every grade except 12th grade.
Among US adolescents, no significant progress has been made toward increasing participation in physical activity or school PE classes; however, improvements have been made in reducing TV viewing time.
Lowry, Lee, and Kann are with the Division of Adolescent and School Health, Centers for Disease Control, Atlanta, GA. Fulton is with the Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA.