Volume 9 Issue 2 (2020)

Health Education and Movement-Related Activities in Youth Work: Estonian Youth Workers’ Opinions and Experiences

pp. 103-121  |  Published Online: June 2020  |  DOI: 10.22521/edupij.2020.92.3

Marelle Grünthal-Drell and Maarika Veigel


Several research studies have revealed that Estonia’s youth are characterized by poor health indicators and decreasing levels of physical activity. Therefore it has become important to pay more attention to these topics within the context of youth work. Adult learner experiences, and their preparation and practice at university have a great deal of influence on their future choices. The aim of this research was to ascertain the importance of health education in the opinion of youth workers, including the importance of movement-related activities in youth work, and the readiness to communicate these topics to young people. The following research questions were formulated: (1) How do youth workers assess the development of skills related to health awareness and movement-related activities during their university studies?; (2) What is the role of, and what characterizes health education and movement-related activities in everyday youth work? Semi-structured interviews were conducted individually with 15 Estonian youth worker specialists. The data was analyzed by means of inductive content analysis. The research results revealed that the acquisition of practical skills is very important for youth workers. It also became apparent that youth workers deal with health education on a daily basis. Movement-related activities are very often considered a priority by youth centers. It may be assumed that the preparation of students graduating from university is insufficient and that they feel insecure when starting work.

Keywords: Health education, movement-related activities, physical activity, youth work, young people.


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