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The purpose of this study was to determine the joint association of fatness and physical activity on resting blood pressure in children. Subjects included 157 children (age 5.5–9.5 years). Moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA, min/day), body fatness, and resting blood pressure were measured. Four categories were created by cross tabulation of high/normal levels of fatness and high/low levels of MVPA. There were significant differences in systolic blood pressure and mean arterial pressure across the fat/MVPA groups (p < .05). Regardless of participating in an acceptable level of MVPA, overfat children had higher resting systolic blood pressure than normal fat children. MVPA did not significantly attenuate blood pressure within a fat category.
Hayes and Eisenmann are with the Dept. of Kinesiology, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI. Heelen is with Dept. of Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Leisure Studies, Kearney, NE. Welk is with the Dept. of Kinesiology, Iowa State University, Ames, IA. Tucker is with the Dept. of Health, Nutrition, and Exercise Sciences, North Dakota State University, Fargo, ND.