Academic journal article The Spanish Journal of Psychology

Spanish Version of the Body Appreciation Scale (BAS) for Adolescents

Academic journal article The Spanish Journal of Psychology

Spanish Version of the Body Appreciation Scale (BAS) for Adolescents

Article excerpt

The need to study the positive aspects of body image led to the design of the Body Appreciation Scale (BAS). The aim of the present study was to develop a Spanish adaptation of the BAS for adolescents, testing its factor structure, construct validity and any differences between girls and boys. Participants were 312 adolescents aged between 12 and 20; there were 148 females and 164 males. The validation analysis of the BAS revealed a one-factor structure with adequate internal consistency (Cronbach's α = .908) and construct validity (correlations with body mass index, influence of the body shape model, perceived stress, coping strategies, self-esteem and variables from the Eating Disorders Inventory-2), as well as significant differences between boys and girls (p < .01). The BAS is suitable for administration in a Spanish adolescent population as a way of analysing the positive aspects of body image.

Keywords: positive body image, body appreciation, adolescents, Spanish population, psychometric properties.

La necesidad de estudiar los aspectos positivos de la imagen corporal, llevó a diseñar la Escala de apreciación corporal (EAC). El objetivo de este trabajo fue desarrollar una adaptación española de la EAC para adolescentes analizando su estructura factorial y consistencia interna, la validez de constructo y las diferencias entre chicas y chicos. La muestra estuvo formada por 312 adolescentes, de entre 12 y 20 años, de los que 148 eran chicas y 164 chicos. El análisis reveló una estructura unifactorial con adecuada consistencia interna (coeficiente alfa de Cronbach = 0,908) y validez de constructo (correlaciones con el índice de masa corporal, influencia del modelo estético corporal, estrés percibido, estrategias de afrontamiento, autoestima y variables del Inventario de trastornos alimentarios-2), así como diferencias significativas entre chicos y chicas (p < 0,01). La EAC es adecuada como instrumento para analizar los aspectos positivos de la imagen corporal en adolescentes españoles.

Palabras clave: imagen corporal positiva, apreciación corporal, adolescentes, población española, propiedades psicométricas.

Body image is a complex and multidimensional construct that includes self-perceptions and attitudes (thoughts, feelings, behaviour) related to the body (Avalos, Tylka, & Wood-Barcalow, 2005; Cash, 2002; Cash, Jakatdar, & Williams, 2004; Thompson, Heiberg, Altabe, & Tantleff-Dunn, 1999). Although associated aspects such as appearance orientation and evaluation, body esteem and the accuracy of perceived body size may be positive to varying extent, the study of body image has focused particularly on negative features such as dissatisfaction or distortion (Cash, 2002). The predictors of a positive body image or the outcome of such a positive perception have been less widely studied, despite the fact that research has suggested that the variables associated with a positive body image could be in opposition to those associated with a negative one (Striegel-Moore & Cachelin, 1999). For example, a positive body image has been found to be associated with higher levels of optimism and self-esteem, as well as with better strategies for coping with problems and emotions (Williams, Cash, & Santos, 2004).

As the study of body image has centred on negative aspects the corresponding evaluation instruments have been designed to capture negative attitudes towards the body (Avalos et al., 2005). Some of these instruments have been designed solely to examine the degree of satisfaction with appearance, without considering other aspects of a positive body image (Brown, Cash, & Mikulka, 1990; Franzoi & Shields, 1984). However, above and beyond satisfaction with appearance a positive body image should include a favourable opinion about one's physical features, an acceptance of one's body despite its weight, shape or imperfections, respect and attention towards the body's needs through the adoption of healthy behaviours, and self-protection by rejecting body ideals presented in the media (Cash, 1997; Freedman, 2002; Maine, 2000; Williams et al. …

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