Moderate-to-vigorous physical activity and personal well-being in European youth soccer players: Invariance of physical activity, global self-esteem and vitality across five countries
AuthorPapaioannou, A. G.; Appleton, P. R.; Torregrosa, M.; Jowett, G. E.; Bosselut, G.; Gonzalez, L.; Haug, E.; Ertesvaag, V.; Zourbanos, N.
In this study, findings concerned with the association of self-reported global self-esteem, vitality and athletes' moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) in young soccer players and the generalisability of these associations across different European populations are presented. After listwise exclusion of missing cases and the elimination of cases reporting less than a week of intensive physical activity, the sample of this analysis included 6796 athletes from France (N = 974), Greece (N = 1416), Norway (N = 1051), Spain (N = 2175) and England (N = 1180). Results from multi-sample structural equation modelling analyses provided evidence of invariance across countries for factor loadings and structural covariances, but not for intercepts and means. Across the five countries, MVPA corresponded positively to global self-esteem and vitality, and global self-esteem and vitality had a high positive correlation. The findings imply that the employed measures have the same meaning across the five countries, but scale scores cannot be compared across countries. The results also provide initial support to the generalisability of the assumption that the positive association of MVPA and well-being is evident across different European populations. © 2013 International Society of Sport Psychology.