Physical activity, health and physical fitness of students, their parents and grandparents

Maria Alicja Nowak, Katarzyna Kotarska, Leonard Nowak


The aim of the work was to compare the behaviors concerning physical activity and taking care of one’s health and the self-evaluations of physical fitness and health of people from three successive generations. Research conducted between 2013-2017 embraced 1,580 subjects, including 400 students engaged in physical culture and health promotion, their 496 parents and 684 grandparents. The diagnostic survey method was used, as well as the techniques of questionnaire, interview and observation. Standard statistical methods were applied: the trait frequency, the independence χ2 test and multiple correspondence analysis. It was found that physical activity, caring for health and self-evaluation of health and physical fitness were more similar within one generation (male student vs. female student, mother vs. father, grandmother vs. grandfather) than between adjacent generations (students vs. parents, parents vs. grandparents). The behaviors and self-evaluations of female students, analyzed within the same sex, were similar to those of their mothers and grandmothers; the behaviors and self-evaluations of male students had become similar to the behaviors of their fathers and grandfathers. Physical activity, caring for health and self-evaluation of physical fitness and health were determined by age, sex, marital status, place of residence and education. The continuation of research in this field is of major importance in the health prevention of Polish society.


intergenerational relations, students, parents, grandparents, health-oriented physical activity, self-evaluation of health and physical fitness

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