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Eric T. Hyde, John D. Omura, Tiffany J. Chen, David R. Brown, Janet E. Fulton, and Susan A. Carlson

The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, second edition recommends that older adults do multicomponent physical activity, which includes balance training in addition to aerobic and muscle-strengthening activities. The authors estimated the prevalence of U.S. older adults (age ≥65 years) who do balance activities and meet the aerobic and muscle-strengthening physical activity guidelines. The authors analyzed data on 1,012 respondents to the 2019 FallStyles survey, a nationwide web-based panel survey. Approximately four in 10 respondents (40.7%) reported doing balance activities on ≥1 day/week, 34.0% on ≥2 days/week, and 25.3% on ≥3 days/week. Prevalence differed by sex, education level, income level, census region, body mass index category, and meeting the aerobic and/or muscle-strengthening guidelines. The combined prevalence of participation in balance activities and meeting aerobic and muscle-strengthening guidelines ranged from 12.0% for ≥3 days/week to 15.8% for ≥1 day/week. Opportunities exist to introduce and increase participation in balance and multicomponent activities by older adults.

Open access

Paul Mackie, Gary Crowfoot, Heidi Janssen, Elizabeth Holliday, David Dunstan, and Coralie English

Background: Interrupting prolonged sitting acutely lowers blood pressure in nonstroke populations. However, the dose–response effect in stroke survivors is unknown. The authors investigated different doses of light-intensity standing exercises that interrupt prolonged sitting and reduce blood pressure immediately and over 24 hours in stroke survivors. Methods: Within-participant, laboratory-based, dose escalation trial. Conditions (8 h) were prolonged sitting and 2 experimental conditions of standing exercises with increasing frequency (3 cohorts, 2 × 5 min to 6 × 5 min). The primary outcome is the mean systolic blood pressure. Results: Twenty-nine stroke survivors (aged 66 [12] y) participated. Frequent bouts of standing exercises lowered the mean systolic blood pressure following the 4 × 5-minute (−2.1 mm Hg; 95% confidence interval [CI], −3.6 to −0.6) and 6 × 5-minute conditions (−2.3 mm Hg; 95% CI, −4.2 to −0.5) compared with prolonged sitting. Diastolic blood pressure was lowered following the 6 × 5-minute condition (−1.4 mm Hg; 95% CI, −2.7 to −0.2). The 24-hour systolic blood pressure increased following the 2 × 5-minute condition (6.9 mm Hg; 95% CI, 3.1 to 10.6). Conclusions: Interrupting prolonged sitting with more frequent bouts of standing exercises lowers systolic and diastolic blood pressure in stroke survivors. However, reductions may only be short term, and investigations on sustained effects are warranted.

Open access

Markus Gerber, Christin Lang, Johanna Beckmann, Jan Degen, Rosa du Randt, Stefanie Gall, Kurt Z. Long, Ivan Müller, Madeleine Nienaber, Peter Steinmann, Uwe Pühse, Jürg Utzinger, Siphesihle Nqweniso, and Cheryl Walter

Background: Little is known whether physical activity (PA)-promoting environments are equally accessible to children with divergent socioeconomic status (SES) in low-/middle-income countries. The authors, therefore, examined whether South African children from poorer versus wealthier families living in marginalized communities differed in moderate to vigorous PA and cardiorespiratory fitness. We also tested associations between family car ownership and PA/cardiorespiratory fitness. Methods: Parents/guardians of 908 children (49% girls, mean age = 8.3 [1.4] y) completed a survey on household SES. PA was assessed via 7-day accelerometry, parental and child self-reports, and cardiorespiratory fitness with the 20-m shuttle run test. Results: Based on accelerometry, most children met current moderate to vigorous PA recommendations (≥60 min/d). About 73% of the children did not engage in structured physical education lessons. Whereas children of the lowest SES quintile accumulated higher levels of device-based moderate to vigorous PA, peers from the highest SES quintile engaged in more sedentary behaviors, but self-reported higher engagement in sports, dance, and moving games after school. Families’ car ownership was associated with higher parent/self-reported leisure-time PA. Conclusions: A deeper understanding is needed about why wealthier children are more sedentary, but simultaneously engage in more leisure-time PA. The fact that access to structural physical education is denied to most children is critical and needs to be addressed.

Open access

Lisa Chaba, Stéphanie Scoffier-Mériaux, Fabienne d’Arripe-Longueville, and Vanessa Lentillon-Kaestner

This article focuses on two popular sports that can put male athletes at risk of developing an eating disorder: bodybuilding and running. Bodybuilders concentrate on gaining muscle mass and runners on leaning body mass. Based on the trans-contextual model of motivation, this study aimed to better understand the psychological mechanisms underlying eating disorders in these athletes. In all, 272 male bodybuilders and 217 male runners completed measures of sport motivation, theory of planned behavior variables (i.e., attitude, subjective norm, perceived behavioral control, and intention to gain muscle mass/lean body mass), and eating disorders (dieting, control, and bulimia behaviors). The results revealed satisfactory fit indices for both samples. Autonomous and controlled motivations for sport were positively directly and indirectly related to eating disorders in these athletes. This motivational mechanism needs more in-depth investigation, and motivational profiles might help distinguish athletes with and without eating disorders.

Open access

Arlette C. Perry, Emily W. Flanagan, Carolina Velasquez, Kara D. Bolon, Gina C. Zito, and Soyeon Ahn

Background: This study evaluated the effects of a novel nutrition and movement science after-school program integrating laboratory experiences for minority children. Laboratory experiences demonstrated how the body moves, functions, and performs in response to exercise and healthy nutrition. Methods: A total of 76 children from 4 after-school programs that were primarily Latino and black were randomly assigned to either an experimental translational health in nutrition and kinesiology (THINK; n = 46) or standard curriculum that served as the control group (CON; n = 30). An analysis of covariance controlling for baseline values was used to compare differences between THINK and CON after the 4-month intervention. Results: Following the program, THINK participants evidenced lower triceps and subscapular skinfold thickness (P < .01 and <.05, respectively). THINK students showed greater improvements in aerobic fitness, grip strength, and agility than CON (P < .01, <.01, and <.05, respectively). Participants in THINK also demonstrated higher scores on their nutrition habits/behaviors questionnaire (P < .01), nutrition science (P < .05), and exercise fitness tests (P < .001) than CON. Conclusion: An innovative curriculum featuring nutrition and kinesiology education interfaced with hands-on laboratory experiences and physical activities can improve physical outcomes and health-related behaviors in after-school programs serving minority children.

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Colin M. Wierts, Bruno D. Zumbo, Ryan E. Rhodes, Guy Faulkner, and Mark R. Beauchamp

This two-part study examined Dweck’s psychological needs model in relation to exercise-related well-being and particularly focused on the basic need for optimal predictability and compound needs for identity and meaning. In Part 1 (N = 559), using exploratory factor analysis, scores derived from items assessing optimal predictability (prediction of affect and instrumental utility in exercise) were empirically distinct from scores derived from items assessing competence, relatedness, and autonomy. In Part 2, participants from Part 1 (N = 403) completed measures of exercise-related well-being 4 weeks after baseline assessment. Prediction of affect was the most consistent predictor of subsequent exercise-related well-being. An implication of these findings is that optimal predictability (primarily prediction of affect) represents a unique experience that may be necessary for thriving in the context of exercise. Prediction of affect should be targeted in experimental designs to further understand its relationship with exercise-related well-being.

Open access

Huda Al Siyabi, Ruth M. Mabry, Amal Al Siyabi, Moosa Al Subhi, and Karen Milton

Open access

Jessica Murphy, Karen A. Patte, Philip Sullivan, and Scott T. Leatherdale

The mental health benefits of physical activity may relate more to the context of the behavior, rather than the behavior of being active itself. The association between varsity sport (VS) participation, depression, and anxiety symptoms was explored using data from 70,449 high school students from the Cannabis use, Obesity, Mental health, Physical activity, Alcohol use, Smoking, and Sedentary behavior study. The model adjusted for potential covariates; interactions by sex and participation in outside of school sport (OSS) were explored. Overall, 70% and 24% of respondents met or exceeded cutoff values for depression and anxiety, respectively. Students participating in VS had lower symptoms of anxiety and depression compared with nonparticipants. Results were consistent regardless of OSS participation; associations were strongest among students who participated in both VS and OSS and males. Participation in VS may prove beneficial for the prevention and/or management of depression or anxiety symptoms, particularly among males. An additive beneficial effect of OSS on depression and anxiety scores may exist.