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Abstract

The purpose of this study was to evaluate the relationships between selected psychosocial factors and the physical activity behaviors of children (grade 4-8) and adolescents (grades 9-12) in a rural community setting. The Children’s Physical Activity Scale (CPAC)was used to measure the psychosocial factors of physical activity, The Physical Activity Questionnaire-Children (PAQ-C), and Physical Activity Questionnaire-Adolescents (PAQ-A) were used to measure the physical activity behaviors of the 167 participants. Results indicated that male and female physical activity behaviors were not significantly different. However, physical activity declined with age [F(8,147) = 5.44, p < 0.05, ES = 0.23]. All psychosocial factors were significantly correlated with physical activity in youth with the single highest correlation for males being “liking of exercise” (r = .61) and the highest correlation for females was “liking of games and sports”(r = .44). Stepwise regression analyses identified three subscales (liking of games and sport, liking of exercise, and parental support) in a significant prediction model of physical activity in both genders. The results indicate that children's physical activity is associated with a variety of psychosocial variables that represent import predisposing and reinforcing factors.