Lack of Association between the Reasons for and Time Spent Doing Physical Activity

Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2020 Sep 17;17(18):6777. doi: 10.3390/ijerph17186777.


Low levels of Physical Activity (PA) and sedentarism are associated with the onset of different pathologies and health problems. Regular physical activity has been linked with being beneficial to the health of the general population. Within this framework of analysis, the aim of the present study was to analyze the association between the time spent doing physical activity and the expressed motives for doing so, from which the innovative aspect of the paper emerges: the use of the time spent doing PA as a study variable of the phenomenon. The data analyzed come from the latest special Eurobarometer survey about the sport and physical activity done in Europe. Using an exploratory factorial analysis and a structural equations model, a six-dimensional factorial model was found that explains the reasons for doing PA, demonstrating that there is no relationship between the reasons for and time spent doing PA. The motivation is not a variable that explains the time spent doing PA, and another type of variable must be used to explain the phenomenon if PA is to be incentivized. Weaknesses of the study are that it works with individuals as a group and that the fundamental dependence on age is not introduced, which could determine interest in practicing PA. Similarly, the impact of the conditions of implementing PA, education, and family history should also be introduced into the model.

Keywords: Europe; active live; health; motivational factors; physical activity; structural equation modeling.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Europe
  • Exercise*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Motivation*
  • Sedentary Behavior
  • Sports*
  • Time Factors
  • Young Adult