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Original Research

Open Access


  • Hyun Joo Min1
  • Woo Jin Jung1
  • Yong Hwan Kim1

1Department of Physical Education, Gangneung-Wonju National University, Gangneung-si, Republic of Korea

DOI: 10.22374/jomh.v15i4.175 Vol.15,Issue 4,November 2019 pp.28-36

Published: 01 November 2019

*Corresponding Author(s): Yong Hwan Kim E-mail:

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Background and objective

Physical activity (PA) is essential for preventing obesity and cardiovascular risks, but the percentage of obese individuals in different populations is gradually increasing, while PA is decreasing with economic development. This study analyzed the changing trends in obesity and PA participant rates during a 10-year period in Korea. Men and women were examined separately.

Material and methods

The census population data from the database of Korean National Health Insurance Service (KNHIS) used in this study comprised information on more than 86.4 million individuals between 2002 and 2013. PA participation was classified as follows: low PA (0–2 days/week), middle PA (3–4 days/week), and high PA (5–7 days/week). Obesity was measured by calculating body mass index (BMI) using the parameters of height and weight of an individual, and was classified as normal (BMI less than 24.9), overweight (BMI 25.0–29.9), and obese (BMI 30.0 or higher). Men and women were separately analyzed.


The percentage of obese men increased from 2.6 to 4.2%, and the percentage of obese women increased from 2.9 to 3.7% during the study period. For men, their Low PA decreased from 80.7 to 78.4%, and High PA increased from 7.9 to 8.2% (p<0.001). The women’s middle PA increased from 6.6 to 11.3%, and their high PA decreased from 8.1 to 7.5% (p<0.001). Among obese individuals, men’s High PA decreased from 7.7 to 7.1%, and women’s High PA decreased from 8.5 to 6.8% (p<0.001).


Obesity increased by 1.6% in men and by 0.8% in women over a decade. Low PA participation decreased, whereas middle PA increased in both men and women; thus, the overall PA participation rate increased. High PA increased in the normal weight BMI group, but it decreased in the obese group.


exercise; physical activity; obesity

Cite and Share

Hyun Joo Min,Woo Jin Jung,Yong Hwan Kim. CHANGE IN OBESITY AND PHYSICAL ACTIVITY ACCORDING TO GENDER IN SOUTH KOREAN ADULTS, 2002–2013. Journal of Men's Health. 2019. 15(4);28-36.


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