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Longitudinal Analysis of Adolescent Girls’ Participation in Physical Activity

Janice Butcher

Adolescent girls were resurveyed each year from grade 6 to grade 10 to determine the change in physical activity participation as they matured and the variables most related to continued participation in physical activity in grade 10. Primary participation declined over the 5 years while secondary sport involvement increased. The five types of variables most related to participation in grade 10 were (a) significant others’ participation and encouragement (socializing agents), (b) movement satisfaction, especially satisfaction with sport ability (personal attribute), (c) independent, assertive self-descriptions (personal attribute), (d) sports equipment available (socialization situation), and (e) preference for active rather than sedentary activities (personal attribute). For interschool teams, the first two personal attributes were most influential. For community organized activities, the socializing agents and socialization situation variables were most important, and for both average hours per day and total activities participated in, sports equipment available was most highly correlated.