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Open AccessArticle

Martial Arts as a Form of Undertaking Physical Activity in Leisure Time Analysis of Factors Determining Participation of Poles

Department of Tourism, Collegium of World Economy, Warsaw School of Economics, 02-554 Warsaw, Poland
Department of Physical Culture and Health Promotion, University of Szczecin, 71-065 Szczecin, Poland
Department of Physiology, Institute of Sport—National Research Institute in Warsaw, 01-982 Warsaw, Poland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(9), 1989;
Received: 11 August 2018 / Revised: 6 September 2018 / Accepted: 10 September 2018 / Published: 12 September 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Effect of Sport Activity on Health Promotion)
Background: The aim of this paper was to analyze selected sociodemographic and economic factors that determine practicing martial arts (MA) in Poland. Our hypothesis states that MA constitute a niche sport, which is a result of conditions shaping the decision to undertake them: perception through the lens of the media/entertainment business (rather than primary values), insufficient space for practicing, as well as high costs. Methods: The study was based on a survey conducted on a representative sample of Poles (n = 12,183). Results for 470 participants declaring some level of proficiency in MA were presented (including 124 declaring active participation). In order to verify statistically significant differences, a Chi-Square test, single-agent logistic regression analysis, and adds ratio were applied. Results: 3.0% of respondents declared basic skills in MA, while advanced skills were declared by 0.9% participants. Only 1% were active practitioners. The leading motivation was “pleasure” (62.1%), followed by “keeping fit and maintaining healthy body shape” (21.8%) and “health” (7.3%). The probability of participation in MA decreased with age (40 years of age being the turning point). As for young people, there is a 15 times lower chance of married individuals undertaking MA, while possessing advanced skills doubles the probability. School provides a place to practice MA during school years, but there is a problem with continuation at a later age (18.8% declaring classes organized at school vs. 5.4% organized at work). Conclusions: Reversing the trend of decreasing popularity of MA requires promotion on each level of education and creating opportunities to continue participation after graduation. There is a need to increase the availability of cheap sport facilities in the vicinity of the place of residence or work. In case of adults, it is important to build platforms facilitating contact with MA centers. View Full-Text
Keywords: martial arts; leisure time physical activity; factors; Poland martial arts; leisure time physical activity; factors; Poland
MDPI and ACS Style

Biernat, E.; Krzepota, J.; Sadowska, D. Martial Arts as a Form of Undertaking Physical Activity in Leisure Time Analysis of Factors Determining Participation of Poles. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15, 1989.

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