An Open Access article published in the Health Behavior and Policy Review Journal.
The full article is available as a PDF download.


Marie-Maude Dubuc, PhD
Seira Fortin-Suzuki, MSc
Sylvie Beaudoin, PhD
Félix Berrigan, PhD
Sylvain Turcotte, PhD


To contribute to the development of tailored school-based physical activity interventions, in this study, we aimed to identify the perceived facilitating factors and barriers of high school students toward their physical activity in the school environment.


A total of 139 students from 4 different high schools completed an online questionnaire comprising open-ended questions on their perceived facilitating factors and barriers toward their physical activity at school. Thereafter, 100 of these students participated in one of the 16 focus groups designed to deepen students’ responses regarding their perceived facilitating factors and barriers. Qualitative content analysis was performed to classify data according to the Social-Ecological Model.


Through questionnaires, students mostly identified intrapersonal elements as facilitating factors and barriers to their practice of physical activity, as opposed to institutional factors during the focus groups. Girls strongly valued the characteristics of the interventions and of the involved school stakeholders.


Our results allow us to qualify the current understanding of high school students’ perceived facilitating factors and barriers toward school-based physical activity and strengthen the relevance of surveying students prior to the development and implementation of physical activity interventions.

Source: Health Behavior and Policy Review, Volume 8, Number 4, July 2021, pp. 331-341(11)
Publisher: Paris Scholar Publishing Ltd.