Physical activity level in physical education among 13-year-old Norwegian adolescents


  • Pål Lagestad Nord University, Norway
  • Hilde Mikalsen Nord University, Norway


Physical education (PE) provides opportunities for adolescents’ structured and regular physical activity (PA). The aims of this study were to examine how much of the PE time 13-year-old students were in moderate and vigorous physical activity (MVPA) level and differences between boys and girls PA level at PE. Furthermore, to examine associations between 13-year-old students’ MVPA level in PE, and minutes of weekly PE, general weekly MVPA, gender, and sport participation. To examine the aims of the study, 200 students used accelerometers for a week, and answered a questionnaire. A main finding was that PE only makes a minor contribution to youths’ fulfilment of PA recommendations, by comprising 4% of the adolescents general weekly PA level. Furthermore, the results demonstrated that the students were in MVPA only 24% of the PE time. The boys had a higher general activity level in PE than girls, and lower sedentary activity and higher moderate activity in PE, compared to girls. Finally, the results showed that the MVPA level in PE was positively associated with more weekly minutes of PE, and activity level in general. Considering our findings, we argue that the PA level at PE contributes relatively little the adolescents’ general weekly MVPA level, and therefore, PE should primarily be viewed as a tool to inspire exploration and learning, and the joy of movement in and through various physical activities among both genders, and not primarily as a source for adolescents PA. 

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Hvordan sitere

Lagestad, P., & Mikalsen, H. (2023). Physical activity level in physical education among 13-year-old Norwegian adolescents. Journal for Research in Arts and Sports Education, 7(2), 72–85.




Emneord (Nøkkelord):

physical education, adolescents, physical activity level, gender