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Child Development Research
Volume 2013, Article ID 835149, 11 pages
Research Article

The Role of Sport Involvement and General Self-Worth in the Interplay between Body Dissatisfaction, Worry, and School Disaffection in Preadolescent Boys and Girls

1Free University Berlin, Department of Educational Science and Psychology, AB Methods and Evaluation, Habelschwerdter Allee 45, 14195 Berlin, Germany
2Institute of Technology Berlin, Educational Psychology, Department of Educational Science, Marchstraß 23, 10587 Berlin, Germany

Received 7 April 2013; Accepted 18 July 2013

Academic Editor: Lei Chang

Copyright © 2013 Diana Raufelder et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


While in recent years there has been increasing research on body dissatisfaction in preadolescence and a small body of research on worry in association with eating disorders, less is known about their effects on school disaffection. Therefore, the current study examined possible gender-specific relations between body dissatisfaction, worry, and school disaffection. To identify possible strategies of intervention and prevention, sport involvement and general self-worth were tested as mediators. Multigroup structural equation modeling (SEM) was used to test for the mediating role of sport involvement and general self-worth in the association between body dissatisfaction, worry, and school disaffection in a sample of 4th, 5th, and 6th grade students ( ; ) in elementary schools in Berlin, Germany. The results suggest that promoting feelings of general self-worth could be an effective starting point in decreasing the association between body dissatisfaction, worry, and school disaffection, in both boys and girls. Conversely, sport involvement was identified as a mediating factor for boys only.