Sun exposure concern, sun protection behaviours and physical activity among Australian adults.

Lawler, S., Sugiyama, T., & Owen, N. (2007). Sun exposure concern, sun protection behaviours and physical activity among Australian adults. Cancer Causes Control, 18, 1009-1014.

Objective: Sun protective behavior and physical activity are both important for cancer prevention, and are currently promoted separately. Few studies have examined sun protective behaviors, in association with physical activity. This study aimed to explore the interrelationships between sun protective behaviors and physical activity. 

Method: In an observational epidemiological study, 1,992 adults aged between 20 and 65 years provided responses to self-completion survey items on their concern about sun exposure, sun protection behaviors, physical activity, in- door sedentary behaviors, and their socio-demographic attributes. 

Results: Men and women, and those who were active and inactive used different sun protection measures. Women reported more frequent use of sunscreen and seeking shade when outdoors, while men reported more hat wearing; women and those who were physically inactive were more concerned about sun exposure and skin damage. After controlling for age, education, and income, concern about sun exposure was associated positively with use of sun protection behaviors; however, those most concerned about sun exposure also tended to be physically inactive and spent more time in indoor sedentary behaviors. 

Conclusion: To promote physical activity and sun protection simultaneously, it is important to take into account findings on their interrelationships, including the significant gender differences that we have identified. 

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