PERCEIVED EXERCISE BENEFITS AND BARRIERS OF NON-EXERCISING IN ADOLESCENT FEMALE IN THE MACEDONIA

Seryozha Gontarev, Ruzdija Kalac, Lenche V. Aleksovska

We used the Exercise Benefits/Barriers Scale to assess perceived benefit and barrier intensities to exercise in 389 non-exercising adolescent female (mean age 16.5 years, SD = 1.1) in Macedonia. Although the sample of respondents consisted of adolescent females who have not been recommended physical activity, the results showed that there are more perceived benefits (M = 4.01, SD = 0.41) compared to barriers (M = 2.35, SD = 0.61) to exercise (t (199) = 6.18, p 0,001), and their ratio benefits / barrier was 1.71. The biggest perceived benefit from exercising that female respondents perceive is related to the appearance (body image), followed by benefits related to health, psychological and social benefits. The greatest perceived barrier to exercise was a lack of time, lack of energy and lack of social support. Lack of time was rated significantly higher than all other barriers. Statistically significant differences were found only between sub-scale for assessing the lack of self-confidence and lack of resources. The implications of this research for development of strategies and educational programs to promote physical activity indicate the importance for girls to increase the ratio of benefits / barriers. The applied interventions should help adolescents to relieve from or make out the discomfort felt from physical exertion during exercising (reducing the perceived barriers) continuing to emphasize health and other benefits from regular exercising (increasing the expected benefits).

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