First Advisor

Gary Brodowicz

Date of Publication

Spring 12-13-2013

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.) in Health Studies


Community Health




Body image in adolescence, Self-perception in adolescence, Exercise for youth -- Psychological aspects, Obesity in adolescence -- Physiological aspects



Physical Description

1 online resource (v, 27 pages)


This study sought to examine whether participation in physical activity affects the ability to correctly classify body size, based on body mass index classifications. Secondarily, this study determined whether adolescents who incorrectly classified their body size overestimated or underestimated their size. Self-report data from the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance Survey collected by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention were analyzed. Logistic regression was performed to examine relationships between self-perception of body size and physical activity, television viewing time, computer/video game use, physical education class time, and extracurricular sports activities. Significance was set to p<0.05. Physical activity was the only statistically significant independent variable (p=0.058, OR = 1.060). Although physical activity was shown to be statistically significant, it did not appear to meaningfully increase the ability of youth to correctly classify body size. Secondary analysis showed that adolescents who incorrectly classified their body size were more likely to underestimate their body size. Females more frequently underestimated their body size (females=673; males=384).


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