What Part of the Day Do Teens Become Less Active?
While adolescents have been observed to be less physically active and spend more time performing sedentary activities as they grow older, no previous studies have analyzed how these changes occur during the course of a teen’s average week. In this study, 363 teens wore accelerometers at both age 12 and age 15, and researchers recorded how much time was spent each day being inactive or performing either light physical activity or moderate-to-vigorous physical activity. They found that by age 15, participants were sedentary 7-8% more often during school hours and both after school and on weekends. Across the board, students spent about 7% less time performing light physical activities while moderate-to-vigorous activity levels remained largely unchanged. Due to the increase in sedentary time across all aspects of an adolescent’s week, the investigators recommend that future interventions intended to help teens become more active need to focus on both their in-school and after-school/weekend activities.
International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, April 2015