Biological maturation and physical activity in adolescent British females: The roles of physical self-concept and perceived parental support

Laura Jackson, Sean Cumming, Clemens Drenowatz, Martyn Standage, Lauren Sherar, Robert Malina

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objectives:
This study examined the mediating and moderating effects of physical self-concept and parental support, respectively, on relations between maturation and physical activity (PA) in British adolescent females.

Design:
Cross-sectional field based study.

Methods:
Biological maturity status, physical self-concept, perceived parental support for PA, and self-reported PA were assessed in 244 female British year 7–9 pupils (M age = 12.8 years, SD = .9).

Results:
Structural equation modelling, employing maximum likelihood estimation and boot-strapping procedures supported the contention that physical self-concept mediated an inverse relation between maturation and PA. A regression model examining the main and interactive effects of maturation and parental support on PA provided evidence of a main effect for parental support, but no interactive effect.

Conclusions:
The results suggest that physical self-concept partially mediates an inverse relation between maturity and physical activity in adolescent females. Accordingly, how adolescent females interpret or perceive the changes associated with maturation may be more important than maturation itself. Encouraging adolescent females to view puberty as a natural and attractive aspect of the process of ‘growing up’ may help mitigate any negative health consequences associated with early maturation. Parental support for PA does not appear to moderate relations between maturation and PA.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)447-454
Number of pages9
JournalPsychology of Sport and Exercise
Volume14
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2013

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