Do adolescents and parents report each other's physical activity accurately?

N. Anderssen, D. R. Jacobs, H. Aas, R. Jakobsen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


In research concerning socialization into sports there is a need to assess children's reports of parental physical activity. Reports by young adolescents and their parents of each other's leisure‐time physical activity and related issues were compared with self‐reported measures. A total of 755 family units in western Norway, consisting of 755 13‐year‐olds, mean age 13.3±0.3 years (425 boys, 330 girls, 644 fathers and 732 mothers) completed a self‐administered physical activity questionnaire. Pearson's r between self‐reports by parents and the reports by their children varied between 0.56 (P<0.001) and 0.07 (nonsignificant). Pearson's r between off‐springs' self‐reported physical activity and reports by their parents varied between 0.41 and 0.55 (P<0.001). The results support cautious use of young adolescents' reports of parental physical activity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)302-307
Number of pages6
JournalScandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 1995


  • adolescent
  • concordance
  • parent
  • physical activity
  • self‐report
  • surrogate report


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