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Psicologia, Saúde & Doenças

Print version ISSN 1645-0086


MATOS, Margarida Gaspar de; MARQUES, Adilson; CALMEIRO, Luis  and  LOUREIRO, Nuno. Adolescents’ behavioural profiles and their associations with physical activity. Psic., Saúde & Doenças [online]. 2014, vol.15, n.2, pp.495-509. ISSN 1645-0086.

The purpose of this study was to identify behavioural patterns in adolescents and analyse their associations with physical activity (PA). This study is based on the fourth Health Behaviour in School-aged Children, which included 5050 Portuguese adolescents (2409 boys; Mage=14,0±1,7 years) studied on the 6th-, 8th-, and 10th grades. Students answered a survey about lifestyles, which included questions about health and risk behaviours as well as self-perceptions. Cluster analyses revealed four distinct profiles: the first one was composed by adolescents who reported low frequency of both health and risk behaviours (“low health and low risk”); the second cluster integrated adolescents who reported high frequency of health behaviours and low frequency of risky behaviours (“high health and low risk”); the remaining two clusters, profiles 3 and 4, were composed by those who reported low frequency of health behaviours and high frequency of risky behaviours (“high health and high risk”). However, these diverge in the fact that adolescents in cluster 3 reported a positive perception of health while those in cluster 4 reported low perception of health. Frequency of PA was significantly different between all clusters, with clusters 3 and 4 reporting more PA than clusters 1 and 4. These results call out for the need to identify and prevent behaviours that can be associated to PA but may be harmful to adolescents’ health as a way to optimise the well-established health benefits of PA.

Keywords : Adolescence; physical activity; alcohol; health promotion; wellbeing; injuries; violence.

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