2015, Volume 11, Issue 1

Gender differences in preferences of martial arts in Polish adolescents

Michal Kudláček1, Karel Frömel1, Dorota Groffik2

1Faculty of Physical Culture, Palacký University, Olomouc, Czech Republic
2Academy of Physical Education, Katowice, Poland

Author for correspondence: Michal Kudláček; Faculty of Physical Culture, Palacký University, Olomouc, Czech Republic; email: michal.kudlacek[at]upol.cz

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Background and Study Aim: The prevalence of physical activity (PA) depends greatly on the options of executing preferable and favorite PA. Objective information about individual preferences in types of PA can support successful integration of adolescents into regular participation in PA. Defining the role of martial arts in regard to girls’ and boys’  sport preferences is a permanent problem that requires objective and continuous diagnostics. The aim of the study is the relationship among girls’ and boys’ preferences in martial arts and further among these preferences and PA participation.
Material and Methods: Online research was conducted in Katowice region and 518 boys and 559 girls at the age from 15 to 17 years participated. All high schools in the region were called for participation, but only schools that allowed the research examination participated. Sport preferences survey that participants completed online via INDARES system was used to diagnose preferences in individual and team sports. The results were analyzed using basic statistical procedures, nonparametric correlational analysis, and Mann-Whitney test.
Results: The structure of martial arts preferences is stable without any radical changes throughout the time. Among the first top five activities in girls are: karate, box, judo, kick-box and aikido; in boys: box, kick-box, karate, judo, and wrestling. Top five martial arts correlate with the nature of masculine and feminine sense of life. There is a strong positive correlation among the preferences of martial arts regarding gender across all age groups:
15 years old (rs = .850; p < .001 ), 16 years old (rs = .833; p < .001) and relatively strong correlation also among 17 years old (rs = .733; p < .001).
Conclusions: Polish version of the online system INDARES is a suitable diagnostic tool for the examination of sport preferences sphere in adolescents. Understanding gender  differences in sport preferences of adolescents can increase their participation in organized PA.

Key words: combat sports, INDARES system, interest, online research, type of physical activity