Physical Activity and Energy Expenditure in Adolescent Male Sport Participants and Nonparticipants Aged 13 to 16 Years

in Journal of Physical Activity and Health
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Sport has high social valence and is a primary context for physical activity for the majority of youth. The aim of this study was to estimate the contribution of participation in organized sport to the total daily energy expenditure and also to its moderate-to-vigorous portion in male adolescents.


The sample comprised 165 Portuguese male youth, aged 13 to 16 years. Physical activity was assessed with a multi-method approach (Actigraph GT1M accelerometer plus 3-day diary record). Differences in the intensities of physical activity and sedentary behavior of male sport participants and nonsport participants were compared using independent sample t-test.


Male participants in organized sports spent significantly more time in moderate-to-vigorous activities than nonparticipants, although the P-value for the 15 to 16 years age-group was marginal (P = .08) on the weekend days. In addition, male adolescents spent 11% to 13% of total daily energy expenditure in organized sports which corresponded to 35% to 42% of the moderate-to-vigorous portion of daily energy expenditure.


Organized sport appears to be a relevant component of daily activity energy expenditure to promote healthy lifestyles among male adolescents.

Machado-Rodrigues and Coelho e Silva are with the Faculty of Sport Sciences and Physical Education, University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal. Mota and Santos are with the Research Centre in Physical Activity, Health, and Leisure, Faculty of Sport, University of Porto, Porto, Portugal. Cumming is with the School for Health, University of Bath, Bath, United Kingdom. Malina is with the Dept of Kinesiology, Tarleton State University, Stephenville, TX.