Document Type : Research Article


1 Department of Physical Education, North Tehran Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Physical Education, Shiraz Branch, Islamic Azad University, Shiraz, Iran

3 Department of Physical Education, Tabriz Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tabriz, Iran

4 Department of Physical Education, Mahabad Branch, Islamic Azad University, Mahabad, Iran


Background: The effects of the coronavirus outbreak on the psychological and physical wellbeing of teenage girls is not well understood. Herein, one of the important mental health-related variables is introduced to be psychosocial distress (PSD). The current research aimed to explore the status of PSD in teenage girls during the coronavirus outbreak considering the impact of physical activity (PA) and sedentary time (ST).
Methods: This research utilized a descriptive-correlation method. We selected 384 teenage girls (mean age 16.93±0.72 years) in Iran, in 2020, using a convenience sampling procedure. The participants were healthy and without any physical or mental disabilities. They completed the standard questionnaires including the COVID-19-Related Psychological Distress Scale, Physical Activity Behavior in Leisure-Time Scale, and Adolescent Sedentary Activity Questionnaire. Spearman correlation test and structural equation modelling were utilized for data analysis.
Results: Our findings revealed that the psychosocial status of adolescent girls during the coronavirus outbreak was 41.50 out of 70. The subjects who were more physically active had lower levels of PSD (r=-0.627, P<0.001, whereas those with higher ST reported higher scores in PSD status (r=0.481, P<0.001).
Conclusions: The results of the current research demonstrate that PSD and PA are significant challenges threatening the health of teenage girls during the coronavirus outbreak. Accordingly, it is essential to adopt appropriate procedures to enhance PA and reduce ST of teenage girls.


  1. Cucinotta D, Vanelli M. WHO Declares COVID-19 a Pandemic. Acta Biomed. 2020;91(1):157-160. doi: 10.23750/abm.v91i1.9397. PubMed PMID: 32191675; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC7569573. ##
  2. Bedford J, Enria D, Giesecke J, Heymann DL, Ihekweazu C, Kobinger G, et al. COVID-19: Towards Controlling of a Pandemic. Lancet. 2020;395(10229):1015-1018. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(20)30673-5. PubMed PMID: 32197103; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC7270596. ##
  3. Gholami A, Rostami S. Effect of a Fun Virtual Purposeful Active Play Program on Children's Physical Fitness during Home Quarantine due to the Outbreak of Covid-19. Mot Behav. 2021;13(44):171-190. doi:10.22089/mbj.2021.10913.1980. ##
  4. Gul MK, Demirci E. Psychiatric Disorders and Symptoms in Children and Adolescents During the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Review. EJMO. 2021;5(1):20-36. doi: 10.1016/j.rcpeng.2020.11.003. ##
  5. Naeimikia M, Gholami A. Effect of Physical Activity on the Level of Perceived Mental Pressure during Home Quarantine due to Coronavirus Outbreak. Sci J Rehabil Med. 2020;9(3):217-224. doi:10.22037/jrm.2020.114158.2503. ##
  6. Tulchin-Francis K, Stevens Jr W, Gu X, Zhang T, Roberts H, Keller J, et al. The Impact of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 Pandemic on Physical Activity in US Children. J Sport Health Sci. 2021;10(3):323-332. doi: 10.1016/j.jshs.2021.02.005. PubMed PMID: 33657464; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC8167336. ##
  7. Dana A, Khajehaflaton S, Salehian M, Sarvari S. Effects of an Intervention in Online Physical Education Classes on Motivation, Intention, and Physical Activity of Adolescents during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Int J School Health. 2021;8(3):158-166. doi: 10.30476/intjsh.2021.91103.1145. ##
  8. Ghorbani S, Afshari M, Eckelt M, Dana A, Bund A. Associations between Physical Activity and Mental Health in Iranian Adolescents during the COVID-19 Pandemic: An Accelerometer-Based Study. Children. 2021;8(11):1022. doi: 10.3390/children8111022. PubMed PMID: 34828736; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC8618706. ##
  9. Dana A, Nodeh H, Salehian M, Mokari Saei S, Sarvari S. Smartphone Usage Status, Sleep Pattern, Health-Related Quality of Life, and Physical Activity among Adolescents from before to during the COVID-19 Confinement: A Cross-Sectional Study. Int J School Health. 2021;9(1):1-9. doi: 10.30476/intjsh.2021.92822.1178. ##
  10. Baygi F, Mohammadian Khonsari N, Agoushi A, Hassani Gelsefid S, Mahdavi Gorabi A, Qorbani M. Prevalence and Associated Factors of Psychosocial Distress among Seafarers during COVID-19 Pandemic. BMC Psychiatry. 2021;21:222. doi: 10.1186/s12888-021-03197-z. ##
  11. de Brito JN, Friedman JK, Emery RL, Neumark-Sztainer D, Berge JM, Mason SM. Changes in Physical Activity and Sedentary Behaviors During COVID-19: Associations with Psychological Distress Among Mothers. Int J Womens Health. 2021;13:1115-1122. doi: 10.2147/IJWH.S333719. PubMed PMID: 34815716; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC8605880. ##
  12. Ferro MA, Meyer SB, Yessis J, Reaume SV, Lipman E, Gorter JW. COVID-19-Related Psychological and Psychosocial Distress Among Parents and Youth with Physical Illness: A Longitudinal Study. Front Psychiatry. 2021;12:761968. doi: 10.3389/fpsyt.2021.761968. PubMed PMID: 34777063; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC8580883. ##
  13. Forner D, Leslie PK, Aldaihani A, Bezuhly M, Noel CW, Horne D, et al. Psychosocial Distress in Parents with Children Awaiting Surgery during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Children. 2022;9(1):87. doi: 10.3390/children9010087. ##
  14. Karakose T, Yirci R, Papadakis S. Examining the Associations between COVID-19-Related Psychological Distress, Social Media Addiction, COVID-19-Related Burnout, and Depression among School Principals and Teachers through Structural Equation Modeling. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2022;19(4):1951. doi: 10.3390/ijerph19041951. ##
  15. Ruiz-Frutos C, Ortega-Moreno M, Soriano-Tarín G, Romero-Martín M, Allande-Cussó R, Cabanillas-Moruno JL, et al. Psychological Distress Among Occupational Health Professionals During Coronavirus Disease 2019 Pandemic in Spain: Description and Effect of Work Engagement and Work Environment. Front Psychol. 2021;12:765169. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2021.765169. PubMed PMID: 34975655; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC8716488. ##
  16. Caspersen CJ, Powell KE, Christenson GM. Physical Activity, Exercise, and Physical Fitness: Definitions and Distinctions for Health-Related Research. Public Health Rep. 198;100(2):126-31. PubMed PMID: 3920711; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC1424733. ##
  17. Thivel D, Tremblay A, Genin PM, Panahi S, Rivière D, Duclos M. Physical Activity, Inactivity, and Sedentary Behaviors: Definitions and Implications in Occupational Health. Front Public Health. 2018;6:288. doi: 10.3389/fpubh.2018.00288. PubMed PMID: 30345266; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6182813. ##
  18. ShafaeianFard F, Baniasadi T, Soltan Ahmadi T, Biyabani P, Khajeaflaton Mofrad S. Effects of Physical Activity on Wellbeing among Children with ADHD: A Mediation by Self-Esteem. Journal of Humanities Insights. 2022;6(3):1-6. doi: 10.22034/jhi.2022.330605.1056. Persian. ##
  19. Chaharbaghi Z, Hosseini F, Baniasadi T, Moradi L, Dana A. Impact of Physical Activity on Resilience among Teenage Girls during the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Mediation by Self-Esteem. Womens Health Bull. 2022;9(2):80-85. doi: 10.30476/whb.2022.94451.1166. ##
  20. Warburton DER, Bredin SSD. Health Benefits of Physical Activity: A Systematic Review of Current Systematic Reviews. Curr Opin Cardiol. 2017;32(5):541-556. doi: 10.1097/HCO.0000000000000437. PubMed PMID: 28708630. ##
  21. Poitras VJ, Gray CE, Borghese MM, Carson V, Chaput JP, Janssen I, et al. Systematic Review of the Relationships between Objectively Measured Physical Activity and Health Indicators in School-Aged Children and Youth. Appl Physiol Nutr Metab. 2016;41:S197-239. doi: 10.1139/apnm-2015-0663. PubMed PMID: 27306431. ##
  22. Krejcie RV, Morgan DW. Determining Sample Size for Research Activities. Educational and Psychological Measurement. 1970;30(3):607-610. doi: 10.1177/001316447003000308. ##
  23. Feng LS, Dong ZJ, Yan RY, Wu XQ, Zhang L, Ma J, et al. Psychological Distress in the Shadow of the COVID-19 Pandemic: Preliminary Development of an Assessment Scale. Psychiatry Res. 2020;29:113202. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2020.113202. PubMed PMID: 32535511; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC7278642. ##
  24. Hosseini FB, Ghorbani S, Rezaeeshirazi R. Effects of Perceived Autonomy Support in the Physical Education on Basic Psychological Needs Satisfaction, Intrinsic Motivation and Intention to Physical Activity in High-School Students. Int J School Health. 2020;7(4):39-46. doi: 10.30476/intjsh.2020.88171.1106. ##
  25. Hardy LL, Booth M, Okely AD. The Reliability of the Adolescent Sedentary Activity Questionnaire (ASAQ). Prev Med. 2007;45(1):71-4. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2007.03.014. PubMed PMID: 17532371. ##
  26. Dana A, Ranjbari S, Salehian M, Shayan Matin P. Effects of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy on Mental Health of High-School Students during COVID-19 Pandemic. Int J School Health. 2021;8(4):201-208. doi: 0.30476/intjsh.2021.92100.1165. ##