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J Sports Sci Med. 2006 Dec 15;5(4):615-20. eCollection 2006.

Perceived barriers to physical activity in university students.

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  • 1Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation, Faculty of Health Science, Baskent University , Ankara, Turkey.
  • 2The Mother and Child Health Care and Family Planning, General Directorate , Ministry of Health, Ankara, Turkey.


Many studies which were published in other countries identified certain benefits and barriers to physical activity among young people. But there is no data about the subject pertaining to Turkish adolescents. This study tries to rectify this with a study of Turkish university students. Undergraduate university students (n = 303) were recruited to the study. Current exercise habits and perceived barriers to physical activity were assessed in the sample. Using a Likert Type scale, participants responded an instrument with 12 items representing barriers to physical activity. Mean scores were computed. External barriers were more important than internal barriers. "Lack of time due to busy lesson schedule", "My parents give academic success priority over exercise. "and "lack of time due to responsibilities related to the family and social environment "were most cited items for physical activity barriers. There is a need for future research, which will be carried out with larger sample groups to develop national standardized instrument. It will be helpful for accurately identify perceived barriers and then recommend changes to enhance physical activity among young people. Key PointsThe purpose of this study was to analyze perceived barriers to physical activity in the university students.The results showed that not having enough time was the most important barrier for not participating in physical activity among our samples.This study with relatively small sample must be considered as pilot study for related studies in the future.


Perceived barriers; exercise; university students

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