Journal of Human Sport and Exercise

Obesity and physical activity patterns among Balearic Islands children and adolescents: A cross-sectional study

Adrià Muntaner-Mas, Josep Vidal-Conti, Jaume Cantallops, Pere Antoni Borràs, Pere Palou



Childhood and adolescents’ obesity remains a public health concern. In addition, it has been reported that youth population do not reach the international recommendations for physical activity. The aims of the present study were to determine the prevalence and risk factors of overweight and obesity, and to investigate the lifestyle determinants of physical activity practice in children and adolescents of the Balearic Islands (Spain). A cross-sectional survey (n = 3164; 44.2% girls; 10-16 years old) was carried out. Weight and height were assessed to estimate obesity prevalence according to the International Obesity Task Force cut-offs for body mass index. Physical activity patterns, sedentary behaviours, lifestyles determinants and parental characteristics were surveyed.The prevalence of overweight and obesity among Balearic Islands youth aged 10 to 16 years was 22.3% and 19.2%, respectively. Low parental educational level was associated with higher levels of children’s and adolescent’s body mass index, in both genders. The probability of being an overweight children and adolescent was increased significantly with a mother who never practice physical activity. Physically inactive children and adolescents had one and half (boys) and two (girls) times higher odds of being obese than physically active. Girls who exceeded 2 h per day of media screen time had a significantly higher body mass index.Parental educational level, mother’s physical activity practice, size of municipality of school, media screen time and physical activity are important factors of obesity among Balearic Islands children and adolescent.


Overweight; Motor activity; Sedentary lifestyle; Youth sports; Spain


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