BORIS Theses

BORIS Theses
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Sport and leisure-time physical activity behavior over the life course: Description and explanation of factors and events of individual trajectories

Lenze, Lars (2022). Sport and leisure-time physical activity behavior over the life course: Description and explanation of factors and events of individual trajectories. (Thesis). Universität Bern, Bern

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Practicing regular leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) is associated with various health benefits. Thus, from an individual and societal perspective promoting as long-lasting a LTPA behavior as possible is desirable. A life course approach helps to describe and explain such a behavior in the long-term. However, longitudinal studies examining this object of investigation are sparse and little is known about influencing factors for LTPA trajectories over one’s life. For this purpose, a retrospective quantitative analysis of almost 2,000 life courses of Swiss inhabitants ranging from 16 to 76 years of age was conducted. Therefore, a contemporary understanding of the general life course approach with guiding principles and additional, more specific theories enriched with sophisticated statistical methods was used. Our data show that LTPA trajectories over the life course with and without transitions (e.g., dropout of LTPA) regarding socioeconomic factors and the LTPA behavior earlier in the life course vary only to some extent. For instance, being active in a self-organized setting already in early years, helps to maintain lifelong activity without interruptions. Furthermore, the youth as an important socializing stage for later behavior in life seems to be decisive regarding LTPA too: various patterns of LTPA behavior in youth are related to high levels of LTPA throughout adulthood. While different ways of a rather diverse activity engagement in youth is particularly promising for lifelong activity, being mainly inactive in youth also indicates a lower activity index later in life. Additionally taking other life domains into account, life events from the familial and occupational life domain are related to transitions (taking up and terminating) of LTPA behavior over the life course depending on the timing when an event occurs. In particular, the more life events experienced simultaneously before 45 years the more likely to terminate LTPA, whereas the contrary effect occurs after 45 years with a higher chance for taking up LTPA. In summary, by using the life course approach, different types of time-related dependencies for LTPA behavior over the life course were shown and other life events outside the leisure life domain are linked to transitions in LTPA behavior. Further and more concrete theories support the description and explanation of the findings mentioned. Additionally, the analysis methods used represented the phenomenon statistically as adequately as possible. Consequently, this thesis extends the understanding of LTPA behavior over the life course with its factors and events from which implications for future research as well as the LTPA and related health promotion can be derived.

Item Type: Thesis
Dissertation Type: Cumulative
Date of Defense: 2 June 2022
Subjects: 700 Arts > 790 Sports, games & entertainment
Institute / Center: 07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Sport Science (ISPW)
Depositing User: Sarah Stalder
Date Deposited: 08 Aug 2023 08:24
Last Modified: 08 Aug 2023 22:25

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