Background: Physical activity is one of the leading health indicators. The objective was to study the prevalence and patterns of physical activity among young adults.

Methods: 259 Medical students (Men: Women = 116:143) in the age group of 18-22 yrs were interviewed using the official English long version of the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ).The total level of physical activity and activity in each of the 4 life domains – work, transport, domestic and gardening and leisure-time were estimated and was expressed as metabolic equivalent-hours per week (MET-hour/week).

Results: 41.3 % showed high levels of physical activity, 43.2% and 15.4 % of students showed moderate level and low level of physical activity respectively. 84.6 %( n=219) were engaged in work related activity and 80.7% (n= 209) showed transport related activity. Domestic and gardening physical activity represented 63.7 % (n=165) of individuals total activity and 67.2% of students showed leisure time activity. The average time spent in sitting was 7.06 hrs/day. The median of the total physical activity for the whole sample was 39.13 MET/hour/week and 18.10 for work, 4.40 for transportation, 2.60 for domestic and gardening and 4 for leisure-time activity. There was significant gender difference observed with women having low physical activity.

Conclusion: This study provides baseline information about the physical activity levels and patterns including sitting hours among Indian young adults using IPAQ that can used for comparison of data across different parts of world.

Key words: Physical activity; Young adults; IPAQ  
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