Optimal movement behaviors: correlates and associations with anxiety symptoms among Chinese university students

He Bu, Ai He, Na Gong, Liuyue Huang, Kaixin Liang, Kaja Kastelic, Jiani Ma, Yang Liu, Si-Tong Chen, Xinli Chi

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    6 Citations (Scopus)
    34 Downloads (Pure)


    Abstract: Background: The Canadian 24-Hour Movement Guidelines for Adults was released in 2020. There is a dearth of evidence on the association between adherence to the 24 h movement guidelines and health indicators. This study aims to (a) explore the associations between potential correlates and meeting the 24 h movement guidelines using a sample of Chinese university students; and (b) examine if meeting 24 h movement guidelines is associated with the severity of anxiety symptoms. Methods: Cross-sectional findings are based on 1846 Chinese university students (mean age = 20.7 years, 64.0% female). Movement behaviors (physical activity, sedentary behavior, and sleep duration), possible correlates, and anxiety symptoms were measured through self-reported online questionnaires. Logistic regression models were performed to examine the associations. Results: We found that male students and those who had a mother with a master’s degree or above, more close friends and higher perceived family affluence were more likely to meet the overall 24 h guidelines. Meeting all 24 h movement guidelines presented the lower odds for severe anxiety symptoms than those meeting fewer recommendations in the 24 h movement guidelines. Conclusions: As one of the first to examine the correlates of adherence to the 24 h movement guidelines and the relationship between anxiety symptoms and meeting the guidelines among Chinese university students, our findings contribute to the growing body of evidence linking movement behaviors, psychosocial correlates, and heath indicators. Schools and health providers can encourage movement behaviors that follow the guidelines on campus.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number2052
    Number of pages11
    JournalBMC Public Health
    Publication statusPublished - 9 Nov 2021

    Bibliographical note

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    The authors disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article from Guangdong Basic and Applied Basic Research Foundation (Project: No. 2019A1515012134 and No. 2021A1515011330).


    • Anxiety
    • Anxiety symptoms
    • Physical activity
    • Sedentary behavior
    • Sleep
    • University students

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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