Physical activity and gender differences: correlates of compliance with recommended levels of five forms of physical activity among students at nine universities in Libya

El Ansari, Walid and Khalil, Khalid and Crone, Diane and Stock, Christiane (2014) Physical activity and gender differences: correlates of compliance with recommended levels of five forms of physical activity among students at nine universities in Libya. Central European Journal of Public Health, 22 (2). pp. 98-105. ISSN 1210-7778

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Abstract

AIMS: This cross-sectional survey assessed and compared by gender the levels and correlates of achieving the international guidelines recommendations on five forms of physical activity (PA) (walking, moderate PA, vigorous PA, moderate or vigorous PA- MVPA, and muscle-strengthening PA). We examined the associations between achieving the international guidelines recommendations on five forms of PA and a variety of sociodemographic, health and academic performance variables. METHODS: Data was collected across nine Libyan universities (2008-2009, representative sample of 1,300 undergraduates). A self-administered questionnaire assessed frequency and duration of PA/week for each form of PA. Cut-offs for recommended guidelines were set according to the American Heart Association. RESULTS: About 43.7% of students achieved the guidelines for muscle strengthening PA, 20.7% for walking, 11.2% for vigorous PA, 28.5% for MVPA, and 4.8% for moderate PA (excluding walking). Binary logistic regression showed that except for walking, males were consistently associated with achieving the guidelines recommendations for all other forms of PA. Students with higher health awareness were more likely to achieve the guidelines for vigorous PA and muscle strengthening PA. Better academic performance was associated with higher levels of muscle strengthening PA. Students at institutions in the East of Libya were less likely to achieve the guidelines for walking, vigorous PA or muscle strengthening PA as compared to students from the North. Students from the West of Libya were also less likely to walk or to engage in moderate PA than their peers from the North. CONCLUSIONS: Overall, relatively low proportions of students achieved the recommended guidelines of PA. Female students were particularly at risk for low level of PA. Attention is required to national policies that promote active living, along with addressing the cultural, geographic and other barriers to engagement of young adult males and females in PA.

Item Type: Article
Article Type: Article
Additional Information: Final Published version freely available via the publishers website
Uncontrolled Keywords: Adolescent Adult Cross-Sectional Studies *Exercise Female *Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice Humans Libya Male Residence Characteristics/statistics & numerical data Sex Factors Students/*statistics & numerical data *Universities Young Adult
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Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine > RA773 Personal health and hygiene including clothing, bathing, exercise, travel, nutrition, sleep, sex hygiene
Divisions: Faculty of Business, Computing and Applied Sciences > School of Health and Social Care > Health and Social Care
Research Priority Areas: Sport, Exercise, Health & Wellbeing
Depositing User: Susan Turner
Date Deposited: 26 Jan 2015 15:03
Last Modified: 08 Nov 2016 08:14
URI: http://eprints.glos.ac.uk/id/eprint/1011

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