The intervention potential of physical activity programs for intermediate schools (grades 7–9), could be enhanced by an understanding of how students engage with and disengage from physical activity. This study provides an interpretation of how adolescents, parents, teachers, and principals perceive students’ involvement in physical activity within their intermediate school environment. Thematic analyses of eighteen interview transcripts resulted in an interpretation of students’ continuum of engagement with or disengagement from physical activity. The continuum is reflective of a social process that is grounded in three key themes: school culture, social valuing of athletic elitism, and adolescent challenge


Physical Activity, Intermediate Schools, Adolescence, Athletic Elitism, and Qualitative Methods

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
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