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Open access

Yang Liu, Yan Tang, Zhen-Bo Cao, Pei-Jie Chen, Jia-Lin Zhang, Zheng Zhu, Jie Zhuang, Yang Yang and Yue-Ying Hu

Background:

Internationally comparable evidence is important to advocate for young people’s physical activity. The aim of this article is to present the inaugural Shanghai (China) Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth.

Methods:

Since no national data are available, the working group developed the survey questionnaire and carried out the school surveys for students (n = 71,404), parents (n = 70,346), and school administrators and teachers (n = 1398). The grades of 9 report card indicators were assigned in accordance with the survey results against a defined benchmark: A is 81% to 100%; B is 61% to 80%; C is 41% to 60%, D is 21% to 40%; F is 0% to 20%.

Results:

The 9 indicators were graded as follows: Overall Physical Activity Levels (F), Organized Sport Participation (F), Active Play (D-), Active Transportation (C-), Sedentary Behavior (F), Family and Peers (B), School (B+), Community and the Built Environment (D+), and Government (D).

Conclusions:

Levels of physical activity and sedentary behavior were low and below the respective recommended guidelines. Interventions and policies at the community level should be encouraged to promote physical activity and reduce sedentary behavior. Future national surveys should be encouraged to strengthen Shanghai’s Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth.

Open access

Monika Uys, Susan Bassett, Catherine E. Draper, Lisa Micklesfield, Andries Monyeki, Anniza de Villiers, Estelle V. Lambert and the HAKSA 2016 Writing Group

Background:

We present results of the 2016 Healthy Active Kids South Africa (HAKSA) Report Card on the current status of physical activity (PA) and nutrition in South African youth. The context in which we interpret the findings is that participation in PA is a fundamental human right, along with the right to “attainment of the highest standard of health.”

Methods:

The HAKSA 2016 Writing Group was comprised of 33 authorities in physical education, exercise science, nutrition, public health, and journalism. The search strategy was based on peer-reviewed manuscripts, dissertations, and ‘gray’ literature. The core PA indicators are Overall Physical Activity Level; Organized Sport Participation; Active and Outdoor Play; Active Transportation; Sedentary Behaviors; Family and Peer Influences; School; Community and the Built Environment; and National Government Policy, Strategies, and Investment. In addition, we reported on Physical Fitness and Motor Proficiency separately. We also reported on nutrition indicators including Overweight and Under-nutrition along with certain key behaviors such as Fruit and Vegetable Intake, and policies and programs including School Nutrition Programs and Tuck Shops. Data were extracted and grades assigned after consensus was reached. Grades were assigned to each indicator ranging from an A, succeeding with a large majority of children and youth (81% to 100%); B, succeeding with well over half of children and youth (61% to 80%); C, succeeding with about half of children and youth (41% to 60%); D, succeeding with less than half but some children and youth (21% to 40%); and F, succeeding with very few children and youth (0% to 20%); INC is inconclusive.

Results:

Overall PA levels received a C grade, as we are succeeding with more than 50% of children meeting recommendations. Organized Sports Participation also received a C, and Government Policies remain promising, receiving a B. Screen time and sedentary behavior were a major concern. Under- and over-weight were highlighted and, as overweight is on the rise, received a D grade.

Conclusions:

In particular, issues of food security, obesogenic environments, and access to activity-supportive environments should guide social mobilization downstream and policy upstream. There is an urgent need for practice-based evidence based on evaluation of existing, scaled up interventions.

Open access

Yoonkyung Song, Hyuk In Yang, Eun-Young Lee, Mi-Seong Yu, Min Jae Kang, Hyun Joo Kang, Wook Song, YeonSoo Kim, Hyon Park, Han Joo Lee, Sang-hoon Suh, John C. Spence and Justin Y. Jeon

Background:

South Korea’s 2016 Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth is the first assessment of physical activity according to the indicators set by Active Healthy Kids Global Alliance.

Methods:

National surveys were used as preferred sources of data. This was then supported by peer-reviewed papers and government reports identified by a systematic search of the literature written in English or Korean. A Research Working Group then graded indicators based on the collected evidence.

Results:

Each indicator was graded as follows: Overall Physical Activity, D-; Organized Sport and Physical Activity Participation, C-; Active Transport, C+; Sedentary Behavior, F; School, D; Government and Investment, C; Active Play, Physical Literacy, Family and Peers, and Community and Built Environment were graded INC (incomplete) due to lack of available evidence.

Conclusions:

Though the final grades of key indicators for South Korean children and youth are not satisfactory, increasing interests and investments have been demonstrated at a national level. More evidence is required for comprehensive assessment on all indicators to better inform policy and practice. This should be accompanied by the use of consistent criteria to contribute to global efforts for active healthy kids.

Open access

Blanca Roman-Viñas, Jorge Marin, Mairena Sánchez-López, Susana Aznar, Rosaura Leis, Raquel Aparicio-Ugarriza, Helmut Schroder, Rocío Ortiz-Moncada, German Vicente, Marcela González-Gross and Lluís Serra-Majem

Background:

The first Active Healthy Kids Spanish Report Card aims to gather the most robust information about physical activity (PA) and sedentary behavior of children and adolescents.

Methods:

A Research Working Group of experts on PA and sport sciences was convened. A comprehensive data search, based on a review of the literature, dissertations, gray literature, and experts’ nonpublished data, was conducted to identify the best sources to grade each indicator following the procedures and methodology outlined by the Active Healthy Kids Canada Report Card model.

Results:

Overall PA (based on objective and self-reported methods) was graded as D-, Organized Sports Participation as B, Active Play as C+, Active Transportation as C, Sedentary Behavior as D, School as C, and Family and Peers as Incomplete, Community and the Built Environment as Incomplete, and Government as Incomplete.

Conclusions:

Spanish children and adolescents showed low levels of adherence to PA and sedentary behavior guidelines, especially females and adolescents. There is a need to achieve consensus and harmonize methods to evaluate PA and sedentary behavior to monitor changes over time and to evaluate the effectiveness of policies to promote PA.

Open access

Christine Delisle Nyström, Christel Larsson, Bettina Ehrenblad, Hanna Eneroth, Ulf Eriksson, Marita Friberg, Maria Hagströmer, Anna Karin Lindroos, John J. Reilly and Marie Löf

Background:

The 2016 Swedish Report Card on Physical Activity (PA) for Children and Youth is a unique compilation of the existing physical and health related data in Sweden. The aim of this article is to summarize the procedure and results from the report card.

Methods:

Nationally representative surveys and individual studies published between 2005–2015 were included. Eleven PA and health indicators were graded using the Active Healthy Kids Canada grading system. Grades were assigned based on the percentage of children/youth meeting a defined benchmark (A: 81% to 100%, B: 61% to 80%, C: 41% to 60%, D: 21% to 40%, F: 0% to 20%, or incomplete (INC).

Results:

The assigned grades were Overall Physical Activity, D; Organized Sport Participation, B+; Active Play, INC; Active Transportation, C+; Sedentary Behaviors, C; Family and Peers, INC; School, C+; Community and the Built Environment, B; Government Strategies and Investments, B; Diet, C-; and Obesity, D.

Conclusions:

The included data provides some support that overall PA is too low and sedentary behavior is too high for almost all age groups in Sweden, even with the many national policies as well as an environment that is favorable to the promotion of PA.

Open access

Areekul Amornsriwatanakul, Kasem Nakornkhet, Piyawat Katewongsa, Chairat Choosakul, Tippawan Kaewmanee, Kurusart Konharn, Atchara Purakom, Anoma Santiworakul, Patraporn Sitilertpisan, Sonthaya Sriramatr, Araya Yankai, Michael Rosenberg and Fiona C. Bull

Background:

Physical activity (PA) is recognized as one of the core modifiable risk factors of noncommunicable diseases. However, little is known about PA in the Thai population, particularly in children. The report card (RC) project provided Thailand with an opportunity to assess PA behaviors in children. This paper summarizes the methodology, grading process, and the final grades of the Thai RC.

Methods:

A school-based survey was conducted to collect data from a nationally representative sample of children aged 6 to 17 years. Survey results provided the primary source for the RC. Nine indicators were graded using the Global Matrix 2.0 framework. Grading was undertaken by a national committee comprising experts from key stakeholders.

Results:

Grades ranged from F to B. Overall PA and Sedentary Behaviors both received the grade D-. Organized Sport Participation scored a C. Active Play scored the grade F. Active Transport and support from Family and Peers were both graded B. School, Community, and Government indicators were scored C.

Conclusions:

In Thai children, participation in PA and active play is very low; conversely, sedentary behaviors are high. These first data on patterns of activity for the Thailand RC will serve to guide national actions and advocacy aimed at increasing PA in children.

Open access

António Prista, Timoteo Daca, Francisco Tchonga, Eduardo Machava, Cremildo Macucule and Edmundo Ribeiro

Background:

This article describes the procedures and development of the 2016 Mozambican Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Adolescents.

Methods:

Following the procedures adopted in 2014 for that year’s report card, comprehensive searches on new data related to indicators of physical activity (PA) were done. A committee composed of physical activity and sports specialists graded each indicator consistent with the process and methodology outlined by the Active Healthy Kids Canada Report Card model.

Results:

Nine indicators of PA were graded. Compared with 2014 there were several differences which were caused by changes in the country as well as a more effective evaluation from the committee. The following grades were assigned: Overall Physical Activity Levels, C; Organized Sport Participation, F; Active Play, D; Active Transportation, C; Schools, D; Community and the Built Environment, F; and Government, F. Sedentary Behaviors and Family and Peers were graded Incomplete due to the lack of available information.

Conclusions:

The decline of the PA habits in urban centers reported in 2014 are accentuated and is influencing the rural areas in several ways. At present, there is no strategy or effective action from authorities to reverse this negative trend.

Open access

Vedrana Sember, Gregor Starc, Gregor Jurak, Mojca Golobič, Marjeta Kovač, Poljanka Pavletič Samardžija and Shawnda A. Morrison

Background:

This is the first assessment of the Republic of Slovenia’s efforts to synthesize and report physical activity (PA) standards for children and youth following the Active Healthy Kids Global Alliance grading system model.

Methods:

The Republic of Slovenia Report Card relies on research findings published in peer-reviewed journals, data compiled from national databases, and government initiatives which have been monitoring physical fitness standards in schools for the past 34 years (SLOfit and ACDSi). The Report Card initiative has been jointly coordinated by the University of Primorska and the University of Ljubljana. A Research Work Group consisting of 12 representatives from various aspects of Slovenia’s public, private, and government sectors convened to evaluate evidence and assign grades for each PA indicator.

Results:

Grades (A, highest, to F, lowest; INC, incomplete) for Slovenia are as follows: Overall Physical Activity (A-), Organized Sport Participation (B-), Active Play (D), Active Transportation (C), Sedentary Behaviors (B+), Family and Peers (INC), Schools (A), Community and the Built Environment (INC), and Government (B+).

Conclusions:

This inclusive PA report indicates that overall physical activity minutes remain high in Slovenian children and youth; however, more research is needed to determine the effects of family life, peer influences, and the built environment on active play behaviors.

Open access

Mouza Al Zaabi, Syed Mahboob Shah, Mohamud Sheek-Hussein, Abdishakur Abdulle, Abdulla Al Junaibi and Tom Loney

Background:

The Active Healthy Kids 2016 United Arab Emirates (UAE) Report Card provides a systematic evaluation of how the UAE is performing in supporting and engaging physical activity (PA) in children and adolescents.

Methods:

The Active Healthy Kids Global Alliance framework and standardized set of procedures were used to perform the systematic assessment of PA in UAE youth and children. Indicator grades were based on the proportion of children and youth achieving a defined benchmark: A = 81% to 100%; B = 61% to 80%; C = 41% to 60%; D = 21% to 40%; F = 0% to 20%; INC = incomplete data.

Results:

Overall Physical Activity Level and Active Transportation both received a grade of D-/F-. Sedentary Behavior and Family and Peers both received a C- minus grade and School was graded D. Minus grades indicate PA disparities related to age, gender, nationality, socioeconomic status, and geographic location. Government Strategies and Investments received a B+ grade. Sport Participation, Active Play, and Community and the Built Environment were graded INC due to a lack of nationally representative data for all 7 emirates.

Conclusions:

The majority of UAE children are not achieving the daily recommended level of PA. The UAE leadership has invested significant resources into improving PA through school- and community-based PA interventions; however, inter- and intraemirate population-based strategies remain fragmented.

Open access

Peter T. Katzmarzyk, Kara D. Denstel, Kim Beals, Christopher Bolling, Carly Wright, Scott E. Crouter, Thomas L. McKenzie, Russell R. Pate, Brian E. Saelens, Amanda E. Staiano, Heidi I. Stanish and Susan B. Sisson

Background:

The 2016 United States (U.S.) Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth provides a comprehensive evaluation of physical activity levels and factors influencing physical activity among children and youth.

Methods:

The report card includes 10 indicators: Overall Physical Activity, Sedentary Behavior, Active Transportation, Organized Sport Participation, Active Play, Health-related Fitness, Family and Peers, School, Community and the Built Environment, and Government Strategies and Investments. Nationally representative data were used to evaluate the indicators using a standard grading rubric.

Results:

Sufficient data were available to assign grades to 7 of the indicators, and these ranged from B- for Community and the Built Environment to F for Active Transportation. Overall Physical Activity received a grade of D- due to the low prevalence of meeting physical activity guidelines. A grade of D was assigned to Health-related Fitness, reflecting the low prevalence of meeting cardiorespiratory fitness standards. Disparities across age, gender, racial/ethnic and socioeconomic groups were observed for several indicators.

Conclusions:

Continued poor grades suggest that additional work is required to provide opportunities for U.S. children to be physically active. The observed disparities indicate that special attention should be given to girls, minorities, and those from lower socioeconomic groups when implementing intervention strategies.