The lockdown period in Italy, due to Covid-19 government restrictions, caused sedentary behavior and a reduction in physical activity, with an increase in body weight and a change in body perception. Body image includes beliefs about one’s appearance. Women tend to exhibit poor body image compared to men; if we consider adolescence, this difference tends to be greater. In addition, only a small percentage of adolescents believe their body image to be adequate. Given that adolescence represents one of the periods with the highest level of physical change, including changes in weight, height, and body shape, we wanted to study how self-efficacy can be affected by body image. Studies have shown that self-efficacious students tend to be more persistent in the face of unexpected difficulties, particularly important in the current pandemic conditions. In our study, we analyze the relationship between the variation of perceived weight after two months of lockdown, and Self-efficacy, mediated by body image perception in a sample of Italian adolescents. Simple mediation analyses were conducted using PROCESS 3.5 for SPSS 27. Two-hundred and fifty high school students from northern Italy took part in the study (82% female, with a mean age of 16 years ±1,43). The data confirmed a partial mediation effect of body image perception. These results highlight how body image assumes significance for one of the most relevant developmental tasks for adolescents related to evaluation and selfperception affecting their self-efficacy, which is also a predictor of their academic achievement. We hope that studies like these can support the importance of interventions aimed at promoting well-being among adolescents, specifically regarding aspects of physical and motivational self-evaluation.

Changes in Weight, Body Image Perception and Self-Efficacy: A Study on Italian Adolescents during the Pandemic Period

De Lorenzo Aurelia
First
;
Lattke Lynda Stella;Rabaglietti Emanuela
Last
2021

Abstract

The lockdown period in Italy, due to Covid-19 government restrictions, caused sedentary behavior and a reduction in physical activity, with an increase in body weight and a change in body perception. Body image includes beliefs about one’s appearance. Women tend to exhibit poor body image compared to men; if we consider adolescence, this difference tends to be greater. In addition, only a small percentage of adolescents believe their body image to be adequate. Given that adolescence represents one of the periods with the highest level of physical change, including changes in weight, height, and body shape, we wanted to study how self-efficacy can be affected by body image. Studies have shown that self-efficacious students tend to be more persistent in the face of unexpected difficulties, particularly important in the current pandemic conditions. In our study, we analyze the relationship between the variation of perceived weight after two months of lockdown, and Self-efficacy, mediated by body image perception in a sample of Italian adolescents. Simple mediation analyses were conducted using PROCESS 3.5 for SPSS 27. Two-hundred and fifty high school students from northern Italy took part in the study (82% female, with a mean age of 16 years ±1,43). The data confirmed a partial mediation effect of body image perception. These results highlight how body image assumes significance for one of the most relevant developmental tasks for adolescents related to evaluation and selfperception affecting their self-efficacy, which is also a predictor of their academic achievement. We hope that studies like these can support the importance of interventions aimed at promoting well-being among adolescents, specifically regarding aspects of physical and motivational self-evaluation.
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https://www.ej-social.org/index.php/ejsocial/issue/view/6
Adolescents, Body Image Perception, Covid-19, Self-efficacy
De Lorenzo Aurelia, Lattke Lynda Stella, Rabaglietti Emanuela
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/2318/1865533
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