Abstract The purpose of this study was to investigate whether Danish children from immigrant backgrounds are less physically active than children from the ethnic majority, and to investigate the possible reasons for any differences found. Accelerometer measures of physical activity as well as questionnaire data about organised sports, family demography, resources and values were collected from 594 children of whom 67 had other ethnic background than Danish. Data were collected when the children were 6-7 years old and again later when the children were 9-10 years old. It was found that children from immigrant backgrounds were not less physically active than other children when their amounts of daily physical activity were measured by direct objective measures, despite their participation rate in organised sports being much lower. Using multiple logistic regression modelling, this study showed that lack of parental experience with organised sports and lack of economic/material resources explained much of the difference in sports participation. Children of immigrant background had significant lower participation in club sports but this did not affect their overall physical activity level.
European Journal of Sport Science, 2013, Vol 13, Issue 3, p. 321-331