The Take PART study (Physical Activity Research for Teenagers): rationale and methods

J Phys Act Health. 2009 Mar;6(2):170-7. doi: 10.1123/jpah.6.2.170.


Background: The Take PART study--Physical Activity Research for Teenagers--was undertaken to assess (1) physical activity and sedentary behaviors, (2) indices of health and fitness, and (3) to provide information, from a social ecological perspective, on the correlates of physical activity in a large sample of 15- to 17-year-old Irish adolescents. This manuscript outlines the rationale and methodology of the Take PART study.

Methods: A sample of 4720 students (mean age=16.03 years+/-0.66, range 15 to 17 years; 49.5% female) participated. Fifty participants were assessed during each 3-hour school visit, with a ratio of 1 researcher to 10 students. Standardized testing procedures and extensive researcher training ensured that intertester and intratester reliability for all physical measures was >or=.85. The height, weight, waist circumference, hip circumference, blood pressure, and cardiorespiratory fitness protocols are explained. The questionnaire used well-known, valid, and reliable self-report measures. Where appropriate, additional psychometric testing was undertaken.

Conclusions: Take PART is a school-based study. Its methods are simple, easy to replicate, financially viable, and scientifically valid. Its unique dataset will allow the evaluation of a social ecological approach as a viable option for improving understanding of youth inactivity. Ultimately, this knowledge will assist in successful intervention design.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adolescent Medicine*
  • Anthropometry
  • Blood Pressure
  • Body Mass Index
  • Exercise
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Ireland
  • Male
  • Models, Psychological
  • Motor Activity*
  • Pilot Projects
  • Program Development*
  • Program Evaluation
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Running / physiology
  • Schools*
  • Students*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires