Despite the potential benefits of reducing the risk of osteoporosis in later life, research on adolescent girls’ weight-bearing physical activity (WBPA) is limited. This study explores correlates for WBPA in this population.
A nationally representative telephone survey sponsored by the National Bone Health Campaign was conducted with 1000 girls age 9 to 12 years and a parent. Girls’ physical activities were coded as weight bearing or not and correlated with cognitive, social, and environmental variables.
Regression analysis revealed that WBPA was significantly associated with self-reported parents’ education, parental self-efficacy, girls’ normative beliefs about time spent in physical activity, being physically active with a parent, having physically active friends, and perceived availability of after-school physical activities.
Interventions encouraging parents to participate in WBPA with their daughters and increasing parents’ positive attitudes and self-efficacy in getting their daughters to be physically active should be tested.