The aims of the present study were to evaluate possible gender differences in the prevalence of physical aggression among adolescents, and to examine the association between sociodemographic factors and physical activity participation with physical aggression in boys and girls. The sample was composed of 6,529 high school students (aged 15-19 years) from public schools of the state of Santa Catarina. A questionnaire was applied to collect data regarding sociodemographic factors, involvement in physical aggressions and types of physical activity. Crude and adjusted binary logistic regression models were performed. Boys reported more involvement in physical aggression episodes (36.9%) compared to girls (26.0%, p<0.05). Boys who lived in urban areas (OR: 1.45) and did not live with the family (OR: 2.22), as well as girls enrolled in the night shift were more likely to engage in fights (OR: 1.26). Adolescents aged 17-19 years had reduced chances of getting involved in fights (ORBoys: 0.66; ORGirls: 0.80) compared to younger ones. The practice of team sports among boys (OR: 1.56) and the combined practice of team sports and individual physical activities among boys (OR: 1.91) and girls (OR: 1.36) were associated with physical aggressions. It was concluded that boys were more likely to engage in fights, mainly younger boys, who did not live with family and lived in urban areas. In boys and girls, the involvement in physical aggression was greater among those who are engaged in team sports.
Aggression; Cross-sectional studies; Motor Activity; Violence