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Does activity-related social support differ by characteristics of the adolescent?

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journal contribution
posted on 08.12.2015 by Charlotte L. Edwardson, Trish Gorely, Hayley Musson, Rebecca Duncombe, Rachel Sandford
Background: Previous research has shown a positive relationship between activity-related social support provided by parents and peers and adolescents’ physical activity. However, more information is needed on whether activity-related social support differs by sociodemographic characteristics. The purpose of this study was to investigate differences in activity-related social support in a sample of adolescents, by characteristics such as age, gender, socioeconomic status (SES), ethnicity, and physical activity level and to determine which characteristics are the most important predictors of activity-related social support. Methods: Information was provided by 578 boys and 588 girls (11–14 years) on demographic factors, physical activity, and activity-related support. ANOVA, correlations, and multiple regression were performed to address the purposes of the study. Results: Boys, White British, younger, more physically active, and high-SES adolescents perceived more support for physical activity. Age predicted all types of support excluding peer support; ethnicity predicted mother logistic support and sibling support; gender predicted peer support, father explicit modeling, and father logistic support; and SES predicted mother and father logistic support. Conclusions: Families and peers of adolescents who are female, from Black and minority ethnic groups, older, of low-SES, and less active should be targeted for intervention.


The authors wish to acknowledge the Women’s Sport and Fitness Foundation for commissioning the research and financial support of the Big Lottery Fund.



  • Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences

Published in

Journal of Physical Activity and Health




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EDWARDSON, C.L. ... et al, 2014. Does activity-related social support differ by characteristics of the adolescent? Journal of Physical Activity and Health, 11 (3), pp. 574-580.


© Human Kinetics


AM (Accepted Manuscript)

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This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at:

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This is the as accepted for publication version of an article subsequently published in the Journal of Physical Activity and Health [© Human Kinetics]. The definitive version is available at:






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