Carter, Jocelyn Smith (2018). Stress and self-esteem in adolescence predict physical activity and sedentary behavior in adulthood. Mental Health and Physical Activity.
vol. 14 pp. 90-97
High levels of stress, high levels of sedentary behavior (SB), and low levels of physical activity (PA) contribute to risk for obesity. Cross-sectional studies suggest that youth exposed to more stressors are less likely to be physically active and more likely to be sedentary. However, it is not yet clear whether stressors in adolescence predict activity patterns into adulthood or protective factors mitigate the risk of stress exposure. The current study used data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health to determine whether stressors, self-esteem, and the interaction between them predicted changes in PA and SB trajectories over three waves of data collection. Self-report data from 6504 adolescents (48.40% male; 57.4% European American; mean age = 15.53 years) were analyzed using multi-level modeling. Results showed that stressors significantly predicted PA and SB trajectories, but self-esteem was related only to PA. Self-esteem buffered the effects of stressors on PA over time. Results of the current study demonstrate the importance of stressors on both types of adolescent and adult activity and the unique effect of self-esteem as a protective factor on PA patterns.
Mental Health and Physical Activity
Carter, Jocelyn Smith