Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Show Summary Details
More options …

International Journal of Adolescent Medicine and Health

Editor-in-Chief: Merrick, Joav

Editorial Board: Birch, Diana ML / Blum, Robert W. / Greydanus, MD, Dr. HC (Athens), Donald E. / Hardoff, Daniel / Kerr, Mike / Levy, Howard B / Morad, Mohammed / Omar, Hatim A. / de Paul, Joaquin / Rydelius, Per-Anders / Shek, Daniel T.L. / Sher, Leo / Silber, Tomas J. / Towns, Susan / Urkin, Jacob / Verhofstadt-Deneve, Leni / Zeltzer, Lonnie / Tenenbaum, Ariel

CiteScore 2018: 0.79

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.350
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.476

See all formats and pricing
More options …
Ahead of print


Physical activity and physical fitness as protective factors of adolescent health

Andrea Lukács
  • Corresponding author
  • Faculty of Health Care, University of Miskolc, H-3515 Miskolc-Egyetemváros, Hungary, Phone: +36 46 565111/2215 ext. or 2681 ext., Fax: +36 46 366961
  • Email
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Péter Sasvári / Emőke Kiss-Tóth
Published Online: 2018-08-14 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ijamh-2018-0017



This quantitative correlational design study aimed to examine the variation in adolescent health and lifestyle characteristics across self-reported physical activity (PA) and physical fitness (PF) levels.


Data were collected from 422 students (50.2% males) (16.33 SD = 1.66 y/o) attending a high school. An online questionnaire was used to gather data on the following characteristics: self-reported well-being, overall life satisfaction, depression (including self-harm and suicidal ideation), perceived health status, eating disorders, sleepiness, substance use (alcohol, tobacco and illicit drug use), body mass index, PA participation and PF levels.


Of the participants, 42.4% reported at least 5 days of PA a week for 60 min per day. These high active individuals had significantly better well-being, health status, life satisfaction, PF and consumed fewer alcohol beverages. High PA and better PF inversely correlated with depression.


It seems that high PA and better PF have a positive impact on adolescent perceived health, health-risk behaviors and mental health. Increased levels of PA can play a vital role in the primary care, prevention of health risks and in adolescent health promotion. Accordingly, educational institutions are an excellent setting to promote and provide sport facilities and encourage students to be more physically active.

Keywords: adolescents; health risk behavior; physical activity; physical fitness


  • [1]

    DeHart G, Sroufe A, Cooper R. Child development: Its nature and course. 5th ed. New York, NY: McGraw Hill; 2004.Google Scholar

  • [2]

    Mulye TP, Park MJ, Nelson CD, Adams SH, Irwin CE Jr, Brindis CD. Trends in adolescent and young adult health in the United States. J Adolesc Health. 2009;45:8–24.CrossrefWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [3]

    Bouchard C, Blair SN, Haskell W, editors. Physical activity and Health. 2nd ed. Campaign, Human Kinetics; 2012.Google Scholar

  • [4]

    O’Donovan G, Blazevich AJ, Boreham C, Cooper AR, Crank H, Ekelund U, et al. The ABC of physical activity for health: a consensus statement from the British association of sport and exercise sciences. J Sports Sci. 2010;28:573–91.Web of ScienceCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [5]

    Deslandes A, Moraes H, Ferreira C, Veiga H, Silveira H, Mouta R, et al. Exercise and mental health: many reasons to move. Neuropsychobiology. 2009;59:191–8.PubMedCrossrefWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [6]

    Janssen I, Leblanc AG. Systematic review of the health benefits of physical activity and fitness in school-aged children and youth. Int J Behav Nutr Phys Act. 2010;7:40.CrossrefPubMedWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [7]

    Topp CW, Østergaard SD, Søndergaard S, Bech P. The WHO-5 Well-Being Index: a systematic review of the literature. Psychother Psychosom. 2015;84:67–76.Web of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [8]

    Susánszky É, Konkoly Thege B, Stauder A, Kopp M. Validation of the short (5-item) version of the WHO Well-Being Scale based on a Hungarian representative health survey (Hungarostudy 2002). Mentálhigiéné és Pszichoszomatika. 2006;7:247–55.Google Scholar

  • [9]

    Cantril H. The Pattern of Human Concern. New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA: Rutgers University Press, 1965.Google Scholar

  • [10]

    Levin KA, Currie C. Reliability and validity of an adapted version of the Cantril Ladder for use with adolescent samples. Soc Indic Res. 2014;119:1047–63.CrossrefWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [11]

    Leblanc JC, Almudevar A, Brooks SJ, Kutcher S. Screening for adolescent depression: comparison of the Kutcher Adolescent Depression Scale with the Beck Depression Inventory. J Child Adolesc Psychopharmacol. 2002;12:113–26.CrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [12]

    Morgan JF, Reid F, Lacey JH. The SCOFF questionnaire: assessment of a new screening tool for eating disorders. Br Med J. 1999;319:1467–8.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [13]

    Spilsbury JC, Drotar D, Rosen CL, Redline S. The Cleveland Adolescent Sleepiness Questionnaire: a new measure to assess excessive daytime sleepiness in adolescents. J Clin Sleep Med. 2007;3:603–12.PubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [14]

    Ortega FB, Ruiz JR, España-Romero V, Vicente-Rodriguez G, Martínez-Gómez D, Manios Y, et al. (HELENA study group). The International Fitness Scale (IFIS): usefulness of self-reported fitness in youth. Int J Epidemiol. 2011;40:701–11.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [15]

    de Onis M, Onyango AW, Borghi E, Siyam A, Nishida C, Siekmann J. Development of a WHO growth reference for school-aged children and adolescents. Bull World Health Organ. 2007;85:660–7.CrossrefWeb of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [16]

    Cohen J. Statistical power analysis for the behavioral science. 2nd ed. Hillsdale NJ: Erlbaum; 1988.Google Scholar

  • [17]

    Williams PG, Holmbeck GN, Greenley RN. Adolescent health psychology. J Consult Clin Psychol. 2002;70:828–42.CrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [18]

    Lotrean LM, Laza V, Ionut C, de Vries H. Assessment of health risk behaviours and their interrelationships among young people from two counties of Romania. Z Gesundh Wis. 2010;18:403–11.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [19]

    Riewald S. Regular exercise: good for the body, good for the mind? Strength Cond J. 2007;29:41–2.Google Scholar

  • [20]

    Delisle TT, Werch CE, Wong AH, Bian H, Weiler R. Relationship between frequency and intensity of physical activity and health behaviors of adolescents. J Sch Health. 2010;80:134–40.CrossrefPubMedWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [21]

    McPhie ML, Rawana JS. The effect of physical activity on depression in adolescence and emerging adulthood: a growth-curve analysis. J Adolesc. 2015;40:83–92.Web of ScienceCrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [22]

    Smith MA, Lynch WJ. Exercise as a potential treatment for drug abuse: evidence from preclinical studies. Front Psychiatry. 2012;2:82.PubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [23]

    Wang D, Wang Y, Wang Y, Li R, Zhou C. Impact of physical exercise on substance use disorders: a meta-analysis. PLoS One. 2014;16:9:e110728.Web of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [24]

    Dumith SC, Gigante DP, Domingues MR, Kohl HW. Physical activity change during adolescence: a systematic review and a pooled analysis. Int J Epidemiol. 2011;40:685–698.CrossrefWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [25]

    Trost SG, Pate RR, Sallis JF, Freedson PS, Taylor WC, Dowda M, et al. Age and gender differences in objectively measured physical activity in youth. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2002;34:350–5.CrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

About the article

Received: 2018-01-16

Accepted: 2018-05-22

Published Online: 2018-08-14

Citation Information: International Journal of Adolescent Medicine and Health, 20180017, ISSN (Online) 2191-0278, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ijamh-2018-0017.

Export Citation

©2018 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston.Get Permission

Citing Articles

Here you can find all Crossref-listed publications in which this article is cited. If you would like to receive automatic email messages as soon as this article is cited in other publications, simply activate the “Citation Alert” on the top of this page.


Comments (0)

Please log in or register to comment.
Log in