Perceptions of exercise in obese school-aged children

Pi Hsia Lee, Hsiang Ru Lai, Yu-Hua Chou, Lu-I Chang, Wen Ying Chang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Although the prevalence of obesity continues to increase worldwide, information related to obese school-aged children’s perceptions of exercise remains limited. Purpose: This study aimed to explore perceptions of exercise held by obese school-aged children. Methods: This study used a qualitative research design. Using purposive sampling, 11 obese students who were 11 to 13 years old, currently enrolled at two primary schools, and in the precontemplation stage were recruited from a total population of 1,714 to participate in the study. An interview guide with five open-ended questions was used to guide focus group discussions. Data were analyzed using content analysis to identify significant themes. Results: Six themes emerged from collected data, including (a) positive impressions about doing exercise, (b) recognition of negative effects associated with not doing exercise, (c) feelings of discomfort after exercise, (d) self-ambivalence, (e) false beliefs about exercise, and (f) making excuses for not doing exercise. Conclusions/Implications for Practice: Study findings provided information giving a better understanding of exercise perceptions among obese children. Such may be used to assist obese children to increase exercise levels as part of efforts to improve health in this vulnerable population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)170-178
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Nursing Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2009


  • Exercise behavior
  • Focus group
  • Obesity
  • Precontemplation stage
  • School children

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Nursing


Dive into the research topics of 'Perceptions of exercise in obese school-aged children'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this