Mujeres (In)Activas: An Exploratory Study of Physical Activity among Adolescent Latinas

in Women in Sport and Physical Activity Journal
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  • 1 University of North Carolina, Greensboro
  • | 2 North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University
  • | 3 California State University, Los Angeles
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Recently, a significant growth in immigrant populations has influenced the social, cultural, and political landscape of many local communities. Understanding such changes in U.S. and local demography are central to effective efforts toward reducing physical inactivity, and associated health risks and diseases. In part to document the ways that physical activity currently fits into particular women’s lives, and as critique of the essentialized notions of immigrant communities as deficient in their health standards, we set out to investigate just how physically active Latinas in local communities were. The research was guided by the following two questions: 1) What are the social conditions under which adolescent Latinas make choices about physical activity? 2) To what extent are adolescent Latinas involved in physical activity? Centering on these two questions we administered questionnaires that measured current physical activity involvement, and individual and family background factors. Survey data indicate that Latina physical activity scores increase when home and work related physical activity is included in a self-report measure.

Katherine M. Jamieson University of North Carolina—Greensboro School of Health and Human Performance Department of Exercise and Sport Science 254 HHP Building P.O. Box 26169 Greensboro, NC 27402-6169 Email: Phone: (336) 334-3036 Fax: (336) 334-3238