A Cross-Sectional Study Exploring the Physical Activity Levels of Afghans and Other South Asian Youth in the UK

Safi, A and Khawaja, Irfan and Collins, Peter and Myers, Tony (2023) A Cross-Sectional Study Exploring the Physical Activity Levels of Afghans and Other South Asian Youth in the UK. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 20 (2). p. 1087. ISSN 1660-4601

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Introduction : Participating in regular physical activity (PA) has numerous benefits, such as reducing obesity, chronic degenerative conditions, and depression. Despite many health-related benefits, physical inactivity is increasing in young people worldwide, especially in ethnic mi-nority groups, such as British South Asians (BSAs). The aim of this study was to explore the PA levels of BSAs, specifically focusing on youth from Afghani, Pakistani, Bangladeshi, and Indian groups. Methods: A total of 191 (Afghans N = 44; Bangladeshi N = 39; Indian N = 56, Pakistani N = 52) youth from the West Midlands (UK) participated in this study (mean age 15.4 ± 0.5). The International Physical Activity Questionnaire—Short Form was used to measure PA levels. Data were modelled using a Bayesian approach to determine differences in PA levels. Results: The results indicated that 88.5% Afghans, 80% Bangladeshi, 78.6% Indians and 63% Paki-stani reported engaging in <30 min of PA per day. Additionally, boys were more active than girls across all ethnic groups. Discussion: This study highlighted an alarmingly low proportion of young people from each BSA ethnic group meeting the PA guidelines. To the authors’ knowledge, this is the first study to explore and compare PA levels of the young British Afghan population, thus contributing novel findings to the area of BSA PA. Conclusion: Overall, the vast majority of BSA young people failed to meet the recommended PA guidelines of 60 min per day. Future re-search could utilise objective methods, such as Global Positioning System, pedometers and accelerometery to track and monitor PA levels, and could adopt an ecological approach to explore determinants of PA within each ethnic and gender group.

Item Type: Article
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph20021087
4 January 2023Accepted
7 January 2023Published Online
Uncontrolled Keywords: physical activity level, British South Asian, young people, ethnic minority, health
Subjects: CAH03 - biological and sport sciences > CAH03-02 - sport and exercise sciences > CAH03-02-01 - sport and exercise sciences
Divisions: Faculty of Health, Education and Life Sciences > Centre for Life and Sport Sciences (C-LASS)
Depositing User: Irfan Khawaja
Date Deposited: 12 Jan 2023 11:47
Last Modified: 12 Jan 2023 11:47
URI: https://www.open-access.bcu.ac.uk/id/eprint/14111

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