School-Based Physical Activity Interventions in Prevocational Adolescents: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analyses


<b>Purpose:</b> Literature detailing the effectiveness of school-based physical activity promotion in- terventions in prevocational adolescents was reviewed to identify effective intervention characteristics.<br/><br/><b>Methods:</b> The search strategy assessed studies against inclusion criteria study design, study population, school setting, language, and construct. The risk of bias of the included studies was assessed, and extractions were made of the physical activity (PA) level outcome measures and intervention characteristics regarding organizational, social, and content features. A meta-analysis was conducted to determine the overall effect of the interventions on the PA level. Identification of effective intervention characteristics was done by subgroup analyses. Meta-regression analysis was performed with PA level as dependent variable and intervention characteristics as covariates. <br/><b>Results:</b> A total of 40 eligible studies was included for meta-analyses. Among the included studies, the overall intervention effect on increasing the PA level of prevocational adolescents was weak (standardized mean difference [SMD] .19, 95% confidence interval [CI] .12e.27). Intervention characteristics that improve the effect size to a moderate level were intracurricular PA (SMD .43, 95% CI .19e.68), involving school staff in an intracurricular intervention (SMD .37, 95% CI .16e.58) and a tailored intracurricular intervention (SMD .35, 95% CI .13e.58). Meta-regression analysis confirmed PA as a positive predictor.<br/><br/><b>Conclusions:</b> The effect of a school-based PA intervention was small to moderate. A sensible choice in the assembly of a multicomponent school-based PA intervention increases the effectiveness considerably. Physical education teachers, school administrators, and policy makers should consider organizational (intracurriculum, short and medium duration), personal (tailoring, participation), social (school staff) and content (PA) determinants.

Reference van de Kop, J. H., van Kernebeek, W. G., Otten, R. H. J., Toussaint, H. M., & Verhoeff, A. P. (2019). School-Based Physical Activity Interventions in Prevocational Adolescents: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analyses. Journal of Adolescent Health, 65(2), 185-194.
Published by  Urban Vitality 1 August 2019

Publication date

Aug 2019


Willem G. van Kernebeek
Rene H.J. Otten
Huub M. Toussaint
Arnoud P. Verhoeff


Research database