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  • Publication
    Healthy and meaningful leisure behaviour of young adults as a multisectoral challenge
    Introduction: In the leisure sector our society is confronted with permanent changes. Actual challenges are forcing voluntary activities, handling with new types of media and using free time wisely. According to the Social Model of Health by Dahlgren & Whitehead (1991) leisure-time activities have an important influence on adolescent health. Objectives: The aims of the empirical study were to quantitatively analyse leisuretime activites of youngsters comprehensively (e.g. influencing factors, motives, health consequences, satisfaction, identity formation) and to identify need for action. Methods: In 2012 the FH Burgenland carried out a standardized online survey concerning leisure behaviour of young Austrians between the age of 11 and 17 (n = 461). The questionnaire was distributed among adolescents by virtual social networks. Results: Favourite activites of Austrian adolescents are listening to music, surfing the internet and meeting friends. Sex, age and relationship with parents strongly correlate with choice of hobbies. Some activites like doing sports have a positive influence while others like playing computer games have a negative influence on selfreported health. 32% of adolescents are dissatisfied with their leisure time. Reasons are little free time because of school as well as missing sense of purpose and little social contacts. Conclusions: Austrian adolescents wish to have more leisure opportunities, meetingpoints and less school stress. In future based on these results concrete political suggestions should be developed in order to enable adolescents a healthy and meaningful leisure behaviour. The education sector plays a vital role in that context. Nevertheless it is necessary that all relevant sectors and organizations (schools, communities, (sport) clubs, health promotion organizations, youth work) work together. Possible actions – in which adolescents have to be integrated – are establishing leisure-time facilities and youth clubs.
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