Intensity- and Domain-Specific Levels of Physical Activity and Sedentary Behavior in 10- to 14-Year-Old Children

in Journal of Physical Activity and Health
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to investigate levels of physical activity (PA) and sedentary behavior (SB) in 10- to 14-year-olds and to determine PA differences between week-weekend days, genders and school stages.


241 children were recruited from 15 primary and 15 secondary schools. PA was assessed for 7 days using the SenseWear Mini Armband and an electronic diary. Week-weekend and gender differences were determined using 2-way repeated-measures ANOVA. Combined intensity- and domain-specific PA differences between genders and school stages were examined using 2-way ANOVA.


Weekdays were more active compared with weekend days. Physical activity level (PAL) of boys was higher compared with girls. Boys showed more moderate (+15 min/day) and vigorous PA (+9 min/day), no differences were found for SB and light PA. Secondary school children showed more SB (+111 min/day), moderate (+8 min/day) and vigorous (+9 min/day) PA and less light PA (-66 min/day) compared with primary school children. No difference was found for PAL. The results of the combined intensity- and domain-specific parameters revealed more nuanced differences between genders and school stages.


Our results demonstrate the complexity of PA and SB behavior of children, indicating the need for a multidimensional and differentiated approach in PA promotion.

De Baere (, Seghers, and Lefevre are with the Dept of Kinesiology, KU Leuven, Leuven, Belgium. Philippaerts is with the Dept of Movement and Sports Sciences, Ghent University, Gent, Belgium. De Martelaer is with the Faculty of Physical Education and Physiotherapy, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Brussels, Belgium.