Background: Obesity in adolescents leads to physical and mental complications. Exercise is one of the main components of weight control programs. This study aimed to evaluate the effect of physical activity programs on self-esteem and Body Mass Index of overweight adolescent girls.
Materials and Methods: This study was a semi experimental study.The subjects were 140 second grade student girls from two high schools in 5th district of Isfahan. Data collection scales included: tape measure, carriage scale, questionnaire to collect background and personal information, designed questionnaire based on Health Belief Model, weekly physical self- reportedand adolescent weekly food record form, parent’s nutritional performance questionnaire, teachers’ attitude on adolescents’ nutrition questionnaire and Cooper Smith's Standard Self-esteem questionnaire. Education based program on Health Belief Model for improving nutritional status consistent with model structures during six sessions each 60-minute was conducted with emphasis on diet to control weight in overweight and at-risk adolescents. Questionnaires were compared immediately afterand two months after intervention.
Results: Average score of model structures and self-esteem of students in both groups had no significant difference at baseline, but immediately after and 2 months after the intervention, the mean component scores were significantly higher in intervention group in comparison with the control group. There was a significant difference in component scores at different times in the experimental group. Significant difference in BMI scores was seen at different times in experimental group.
Conclusion: Findings of this study showed that school based approach of physical activity training leads to increase in knowledge, sensitivity, severity and perceived benefits and eventually increase in self- esteem and physical activity in students.