Physical activities and sedentary pursuits in African American and Caucasian girls

Res Q Exerc Sport. 2004 Dec;75(4):352-60. doi: 10.1080/02701367.2004.10609168.


The purposes of this study were to describe and compare the specific physical activity choices and sedentary pursuits of African American and Caucasian American girls. Participants were 1,124 African American and 1,068 Caucasian American eighth-grade students from 31 middle schools. The 3-Day Physical Activity Recall (3DPAR) was used to measure participation in physical activities and sedentary pursuits. The most frequently reported physical activities were walking, basketball, jogging or running, bicycling, and social dancing. Differences between groups were found in 11 physical activities and 3 sedentary pursuits. Participation rates were higher in African American girls (p < or = .001) for social dancing, basketball, watching television, and church attendance but lower in calisthenics, ballet and other dance, jogging or running, rollerblading, soccer, softball or baseball, using an exercise machine, swimming, and homework. Cultural differences of groups should be considered when planning interventions to promote physical activity.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Black or African American*
  • Dancing / statistics & numerical data
  • Exercise*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Leisure Activities*
  • Mental Recall
  • Sports / statistics & numerical data*
  • Television / statistics & numerical data
  • White People*