This study examined the longitudinal effects of out-of-school time (OST) activities on youth weight-status through mid-to-late adolescence. First, using pattern-centered methods, we identified the prominent ways in which youth allocate their OST across 12 common active and sedentary activities available to them. Second, through multi-level modeling procedures we examined the relation of OST activity patterns to: 1) BMI-status during the 11th grade, and; 2) within-person change in BMI-status across the adolescent years. After accounting for race, gender, SES, pubertal-status, and gaming, youth who participated in a sports-dominant activity pattern for 2 or more years had significantly lower 11th grade odds of being at-risk for overweight/obesity compared to youth in all other activity patterns. Youth of all other activity patterns had similar odds of being at-risk as Low-Activity youth and each other. Understanding the relations of OST to youth healthy weight is a critical first step in developing healthy OST settings.
Keywords: ASP; Adolescence; Afterschool programs; Health trajectories; OST; Obesity; Out-of-school time; Prevention.
Copyright © 2013 The Foundation for Professionals in Services for Adolescents. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.