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Open access

Jana Vašíčková, Donald Roberson and Karel Frömel

The Education Level and Socio-Demographic Determinants of Physical Activity in Czech Adults

Purpose. Previous research has shown that physical activity (PA) is determined by several variables, such as gender, social economic condition (SES) and place of residence. The main purpose of this study was to study the association between education and PA of the Czech adult population as well as discovering any other socio-demographic factors that may influence PA. Methods. A population-based survey conducted in 2008 resulted in 6,989 International Physical Activity Questionnaires (short version) from Czech adults aged 26-69 years. This survey included all regions in the Czech Republic. The data were analysed using frequencies and binomial logistic regression separately for gender and education level. The dependent variables were classified as either the "healthy minimum" and "health promotion" according to the amount of PA criteria the individuals met. Results. People with a university education had less PA than other groups of different education levels. The "health promotion" category was met by 9.9% of women and 6.5% of men with elementary education, 67.4% of women and 71.3% of men with a secondary education, and 22.7% of women and 22.2% of men with a university education. The "health promotion" category is also more likely to be met by males (OR 1.33, CI 1.20-1.48, p < 0.001), people with elementary (OR 1.67, CI 1.36-2.06, p < 0.001) and secondary education (OR 1.60, CI 1.42-1.80, p < 0.001), those living with a family with children (OR 1.49, CI 1.07-1.53, p < 0.001), living in villages (OR 1.35, CI 1.14-1.60, p < 0.001) or small towns (OR 1.27, CI 1.10-1.61, p < 0.001), those who have a dog (OR 1.15, CI 1.04-1.27, p < 0.05), and those who participate in organized PA (OR 1.30, CI 1.17-1.44, p < 0.001). Conclusions. There was a surprising low amount of PA among those who studied at a university. Programs that promote PA among university students and future graduates should be considered.

Open access

Dorota Groffik, Karel Frömel and Jana Pelclová

Pedometers as a Method for Modification of Physical Activity in Students

Developing the awareness of one's level of physical activity is an important prerequisite to change one's lifestyle into a more physically active and healthy style of living. The aim of the study is to verify the efficacy of pedometers in educational environments and to specify the differences between physical activity in boys and girls aged 17. Twenty seven boys and thirty seven girls from randomly selected classes in two high schools in Katowice, Poland participated in the study. Students wore Yamax SW-700 pedometers for three weeks, continuously recorded data from the pedometers, and used the motivational feedback booklets. The three-week intervention using pedometers was complemented with the IPAQ questionnaire to assess their physical activity during the last seven days.

For statistical analysis, we used basic statistical characteristics, Mann-Whitney test, repeated ANOVA, "effect size" coefficient ω2 (Tolson, 1980), and other partial analysis programs in Statistica 6 and SPSS 15.

Both boys and girls were less physically active on weekend days during the analyzed period. The use of pedometers did not decrease the difference between physical activity on school days and weekend days. No significant differences were found in the average number of steps per day between boys and girls, as well as no significant differences were identified in the interaction of gender vs. school and weekend days.

Additional study is necessary to confirm whether the use of pedometers in physical education classes can help decrease the differences in physical activity between boys and girls.

Open access

Aleš Suchomel, Dagmar Sigmundová and Karel Frömel

The Role of Physical Activity in the Lifestyle of the Inhabitants of the Liberec Region

Purpose. The aim of the study is to characterize physical activity and physical inactivity of the inhabitants of the Liberec region in their common life. Basic procedures. The research sample consisted of 818 males and 831 females aged 15-69, which were either systematically or randomly drawn from throughout the region. Physical activity and its correlates were assessed using the IPAQ questionnaire. Main findings. According to self-reported data, 10% of the inhabitants are insufficiently physically active, 30% are sufficiently physically active, and 60% are highly physically active. The median of performed physical activity in the inhabitants in Liberec region expressed in MET · min-1 · week-1 was 3822 MET · min-1 · week-1 (IQR = 4371). On average, men spent sitting 393 min and women 415 min in total during a working day. Out of the total sample of respondents, 58% of the inhabitants in the Liberec region were of normal weight, 9% were underweight, 23% were overweight and 10% obese. Conclusions. These facts point to the necessity of increasing knowledge about the negative impacts of inactive behavior and emphasizing the advantages of performing regular physical activity along with the need to establish such conditions that would contribute to physical activity performance.

Open access

Krysztof Skalik, Karel Frömel, Jiri Stelze, Jana Pelclová and Dorota Groffik

The Influence of Increased Intensity Levels on the Attitude of High School Females toward Aerobic Dance Lessons

Available evidence suggests that interest and participation, especially in vigorous physical activity, declines with age during adolescence. This negative attitude toward vigorous physical activity is especially prevalent among female adolescents. This study investigates how increasing intensity levels of aerobic dance, a popular physical education choice of female students, influence the attitude of female high school students toward the activity.

A total of 313 female high school students from eight schools (age 16.32±1.74; weight-kg 53.73±7.58; height-cm 164.37±5.61; BMI-kg/m2 19.87±2.55) participated in the study. Student intensity levels during the aerobic dance lesson were monitored using heart rate monitors, accelerometers and pedometers, and the influence of intensity level on attitude toward aerobic dance was measured by use of a standardized questionnaire. The results clearly show that increasing intensity levels did not diminish the positive attitude of female students toward aerobic dance.

Open access

Sigmundová Dagmar, Sigmund Erik, Frömel Karel and Suchomel Aleš

Gender Differences in Physical Activity, Sedentary Behavior and BMI in the Liberec Region: the IPAQ Study in 2002-2009

The occurrence of overweight, obesity and physical activity (PA) belongs to major factors influencing health. However, information on the longitudinal development of PA in Europe has been, up until now, insufficient. The aim of the study was to describe the changes in PA, sedentary behavior and BMI in the inhabitants of the Liberec region during the surveybetween 2002 - 2009. The data were obtained in 2002-2004 using the short version of the IPAQ questionnaire, in 2005-2009 using the long version of the IPAQ. The sample of participants comprised 957 males and 1066 females aged 25-60 years. A significant decrease in sitting accounting for minutes on working days has been recorded both in men and women. A significant increase of PA both in men and women was reported, however the interpretation of the increase needs to be done cautiously due to the application of the short and long version of the IPAQ. Regarding PA intensity, men show more PA in total than women, which can be explained mainly by the differences in vigorous PA. Women show significantly lower values of BMI in all years in which surveys were conducted than men (p<0.001). Based on self-reported data, we have recorded an increase in the number of overweight and obese people. Time spent sitting on working days has had a tendency to decrease, yet a negative trend in the decrease in self-reported total PA has not been confirmed. Despite the fact that there has been an increase in self-reported PA, no decrease in BMI was registered.