A pictorial view of the physical activity socialization of young adolescents outside of school

Michael W. Beets, Jorge A. Banda, Heather E. Erwin, Aaron Beighle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Childhood obesity prevention has fallen short of anticipated impact. Therefore, intervention programs need to be redirected to other potential settings to increase youth physical activity. This qualitative study, using autodriven interview techniques, was conducted to identify out-of-school settings that youth perceive as important for physical activity. Sixty-six children took photographs involving their physical activity involvement. A subsample completed follow-up focus groups. Salient themes included types of physical activities related to free play, fitness, organized sports, and chores. Most photographs included multiple children of similar age and were taken outdoors. Data suggest children associate chores with physical activity and engage in fitness-related activities. In addition, friends and family, the outdoors, and importantly, the home emerged as natural intervention components that may prove useful towards decreasing the physical inactivity and obesity of youth.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)769-778
Number of pages10
JournalResearch Quarterly for Exercise and Sport
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2011

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Research for this study was supported by an American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance (AAHPERD) Research Consortium grant. Please address correspondence concerning this article to Michael W. Beets, Dept. of Exercise Science, Arnold School of Public Health, University of South Carolina, 921 Assembly St., RM 131, Columbia, SC 29208.


  • Behavioral settings
  • Elementary school
  • Qualitative research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Nephrology


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