The aims of this study are to investigate longitudinal associations between physical activity level and mental health problems in a child and adolescent psychiatric sample, and further whether team sports participation is associated with less mental health problems than individual sports.
The study population was adolescents referred to a child and adolescent psychiatric clinic. PA was measured two times, three years apart, by the World Health Organization Health Behaviour in School aged Children physical activity questionnaire. Internalizing/externalizing problems were measured by Youth Self Report. Linear regressions were carried out separately with physical activity level or self-reported team sports participation as independent variables and internalizing or externalizing problems as dependent variables. Results were adjusted for sex, age and socioeconomic status.
High physical activity was significantly associated with less internalizing and externalizing problems than low physical activity. Team sports participation was not significantly associated with less or more internalizing or externalizing problems than individual sports.||nb_NO