Non communicable diseases (NCD) will account for 73% of deaths and 60% of the global disease burden by 2020. Physical activity plays a major role in the prevention of these non-communicable diseases. The stress involved in meeting responsibilities of becoming a physician may adversely affect the exercise habits of students.
rnAims and Objectives: The current study aimed to study the trend of physical activity level among undergraduate medical students.
Methodology: A cross sectional study was conducted among 200 undergraduate medical students. Quota sampling method was used to identify 50 students from each of the four odd semesters. A pre-tested, semi-structured questionnaire was used to collect the data. Epi-Info 7 was used for data entry and statistical analysis and results are expressed as percentages and proportions.
Observations & Discussion: In our study, 55% were 20 to 22 years old. Over half of the students were utilizing the sports facilities provided by the university in the campus. Majority of students 138 (69%) had normal body mass index (BMI), (43) 21% were overweight. Of the 65% who were currently exercising, the practice of physical activity was more among boys as compared to girls (68% v/s 32%). Lack of time (22 %), laziness (57 %), and exhaustion from academic activities (7 %) were identified as important hindering factors among medical students who did not exercise.
Conclusions: A longitudinal study to follow-up student behavior throughout their academic life is needed to identify the factors promoting physical activity among students
Recommendations: Students are encouraged to use bicycle on campus, involve in sports activity, yoga and exercise sessions.