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Open access

Simon J. Sebire, Mark J. Edwards, Kenneth R. Fox, Ben Davies, Kathryn Banfield, Lesley Wood and Russell Jago

The implementation, fidelity, and receipt of a self-determination-theory-based after-school physical activity intervention (Action 3:30) delivered by teaching assistants (TAs) was examined using a mixed-methods process evaluation. Physical activity motivation and need satisfaction were reported by 539 participants at baseline, the end of intervention, and 4-month follow-up. Pupil- and TA-reported autonomy-support and teaching efficacy were collected alongside interviews with 18 TAs and focus groups with 60 participants. Among intervention boys there were small increases in identified, introjected, and external motivation and no differences in need satisfaction. Among girls, intrinsic and identified motivation and autonomy and relatedness were lower in the intervention group. Qualitative evidence for fidelity was moderate, and boys reported greater need satisfaction than girls. TAs provided greater structure than involvement or autonomy-support and felt least efficacious when facing school-based challenges. The findings highlight the refinements needed to enhance theoretical fidelity and intervention effectiveness for boys and girls.

Open access

Jung-Min Lee, Pedro F. Saint-Maurice, Youngwon Kim, Glenn A. Gaesser and Gregory Welk

Background:

The assessment of physical activity (PA) and energy expenditure (EE) in youth is complicated by inherent variability in growth and maturation during childhood and adolescence. This study provides descriptive summaries of the EE of a diverse range of activities in children ages 7 to 13.

Methods:

A sample of 105 7- to 13-year-old children (boys: 57%, girls: 43%, and Age: 9.9 ± 1.9) performed a series of 12 activities from a pool of 24 activities while being monitored with an indirect calorimetry system.

Results:

Across physical activities, averages of VO2 ml·kg·min-1, VO2 L·min-1, EE, and METs ranged from 3.3 to 53.7 ml·kg·min-1, from 0.15 to 3.2 L·min-1, from 0.7 to 15.9 kcal·min-1, 1.5 MET to 7.8 MET, respectively.

Conclusions:

The energy costs of the activities varied by age, sex, and BMI status reinforcing the need to consider adjustments when examining the relative intensity of PA in youth.

Open access

Kristin S. Ondrak and Robert G. McMurray

Background:

Researchers have investigated the energy expenditure of tennis practice and match play in adults but not youth.

Methods:

VO2 was recorded for 36 youth, ages 9 to 18, during 10-minute bouts of tennis practice and match play. A GLM was used to compare VO2 between practice and match play and among age groups (9–12 years, 13–15 years, and 16–18 years); also to compare the difference in adult and child-derived MET values (ΔMET).

Results:

VO2 was higher for tennis match play vs. practice (P < .05) and there was a trend for 16 to 18 year olds having lower VO2 than 9 to 12 year olds (P = .055). ΔMET did not differ between settings but varied by age group (P = .004); it was highest in 9- to 12-year-olds and lowest in 16- to 18-year-olds.

Conclusions:

Youth expend more energy while playing a tennis match than practice, regardless of age. Child-derived MET values equaled those of adults once youth reached ages 16 to 18.

Open access

Stewart G. Trost, Christopher C. Drovandi and Karin Pfeiffer

Background:

Published energy cost data for children and adolescents are lacking. The purpose of this study was to measure and describe developmental trends in the energy cost of 12 physical activities commonly performed by youth.

Methods:

A mixed age cohort of 209 participants completed 12 standardized activity trials on 4 occasions over a 3-year period (baseline, 12-months, 24-months, and 36-months) while wearing a portable indirect calorimeter. Bayesian hierarchical regression was used to link growth curves from each age cohort into a single curve describing developmental trends in energy cost from age 6 to 18 years.

Results:

For sedentary and light-intensity household chores, YOUTH METs (METy) remained stable or declined with age. In contrast, METy values associated with brisk walking, running, basketball, and dance increased with age.

Conclusions:

The reported energy costs for specific activities will contribute to efforts to update and expand the youth compendium.

Full access

Sara M. Scharoun, Pamela J. Bryden, Michael E. Cinelli, David A. Gonzalez and Eric A. Roy

This study investigated whether 5- to 11-year-old children perceive affordances in the same way as adults (M age = 22.93, SD = 2.16) when presented with a task and four tools (nail in a block of wood and a hammer, rock, wrench, and comb; bucket of sand and a shovel, wooden block, rake, and tweezers; and a screw in a block of wood and a screwdriver, knife, dime, and crayon). Participants were asked to select the best tool and act on an object until all four assigned tools had been selected. No explicit instructions were provided because we were interested in how task perception would influence tool selection and action. Results support the notion that the capacity to perceive affordances increases with age. Furthermore, differences in the way in which 5-year-olds acted on the screw in a block of wood demonstrated that the ability to detect some affordances takes longer to refine. Findings help to further the understanding of the development of perception-action coupling.

Open access

Maurice R. Puyau, Anne L. Adolph, Yan Liu, Theresa A. Wilson, Issa F. Zakeri and Nancy F. Butte

Background:

The absolute energy cost of activities in children increases with age due to greater muscle mass and physical capability associated with growth and developmental maturation; however, there is a paucity of data in preschool-aged children. Study aims were 1) to describe absolute and relative energy cost of common activities of preschool-aged children in terms of VO2, energy expenditure (kilocalories per minute) and child-specific metabolic equivalents (METs) measured by room calorimetry for use in the Youth Compendium of Physical Activity, and 2) to predict METs from age, sex and heart rate (HR).

Methods:

Energy expenditure (EE), oxygen consumption (VO2), HR, and child-METs of 13 structured activities were measured by room respiration calorimetry in 119 healthy children, ages 3 to 5 years.

Results:

EE, VO2, HR, and child-METs are presented for 13 structured activities ranging from sleeping, sedentary, low-, moderate- to high-active. A significant curvilinear relationship was observed between child-METs and HR (r 2 = .85; P = .001).

Conclusion:

Age-specific child METs for 13 structured activities in preschool-aged children will be useful to extend the Youth Compendium of Physical Activity for research purposes and practical applications. HR may serve as an objective measure of MET intensity in preschool-aged children.

Open access

Kimberly A. Clevenger, Aubrey J. Aubrey, Rebecca W. Moore, Karissa L. Peyer, Darijan Suton, Stewart G. Trost and Karin A. Pfeiffer

Background:

Limited data are available on energy cost of common children’s games using measured oxygen consumption.

Methods:

Children (10.6 ± 2.9 years; N = 37; 26 male, 9 female) performed a selection of structured (bowling, juggling, obstacle course, relays, active kickball) and unstructured (basketball, catch, tennis, clothespin tag, soccer) activities for 5 to 30 minutes. Resting metabolic rate (RMR) was calculated using Schofield’s age- and sex-specific equation. Children wore a portable metabolic unit, which measured expired gases to obtain oxygen consumption (VO2), youth METs (relative VO2/child’s calculated RMR), and activity energy expenditure (kcal/kg/min). Descriptive statistics were used to summarize data.

Results:

Relative VO2 ranged from 16.8 ± 4.6 ml/kg/min (bowling) to 32.2 ± 6.8 ml/kg/min (obstacle course). Obstacle course, relays, active kickball, soccer, and clothespin tag elicited vigorous intensity (>6 METs), the remainder elicited moderate intensity (3–6 METs).

Conclusions:

This article contributes energy expenditure data for the update and expansion of the youth compendium.

Open access

Kelly A. Mackintosh, Kate Ridley, Gareth Stratton and Nicola D. Ridgers

Objective:

This study sought to ascertain the energy expenditure (EE) associated with different sedentary and physically active free-play activities in primary school-aged children.

Methods:

Twenty-eight children (13 boys; 11.4 ± 0.3 years; 1.45 ± 0.09 m; 20.0 ± 4.7 kg·m-2) from 1 primary school in Northwest England engaged in 6 activities representative of children’s play for 10 minutes (drawing, watching a DVD, playground games and free-choice) and 5 minutes (self-paced walking and jogging), with 5 minutes rest between each activity. Gas exchange variables were measured throughout. Resting energy expenditure was measured during 15 minutes of supine rest.

Results:

Child (Schofield-predicted) MET values for watching a DVD, self-paced jogging and playing reaction ball were significantly higher for girls (P < .05).

Conclusions:

Utilizing a field-based protocol to examine children’s free-living behaviors, these data contribute to the scarcity of information concerning children’s EE during play to update the Compendium of Energy Expenditures for Youth.

Open access

Kate Ridley and Timothy Olds

Background:

To improve the scope of the Youth Compendium of Energy Expenditures, a range of everyday activities of varying intensity should be measured. This study measures the energy cost of children undertaking common household chores, rollerblading and riding a foot-propelled scooter.

Methods:

Participants were 9- to 14-year-old children. A metabolic cart was used to measure oxygen cost (VO2) of a variety of household chores. A Cosmed K4b2 portable oxygen analyzer was used to measure VO2 during rollerblading and riding a scooter at self-selected speeds. Energy costs for each participant were calculated as child METs.

Results:

Mean child MET costs for the household chores ranged from 1.3 to 3.6 METs. Rollerblading and riding a scooter yielded mean child MET costs of 6.5 and 6.3 METs respectively.

Conclusions:

Household chores were found to be of light to moderate intensity, while rollerblading and riding a scooter were vigorous activities.

Open access

Anja Groβek, Christiana van Loo, Gregory E. Peoples, Markus Hagenbuchner, Rachel Jones and Dylan P. Cliff

Background:

This study reports energy expenditure (EE) data for lifestyle and ambulatory activities in young children.

Methods:

Eleven children aged 3 to 6 years (mean age = 4.8 ± 0.9; 55% boys) completed 12 semistructured activities including sedentary behaviors (SB), light (LPA), and moderate-to-vigorous physical activities (MVPA) over 2 laboratory visits while wearing a portable metabolic system to measure EE.

Results:

Mean EE values for SB (TV, reading, tablet and toy play) were between 0.9 to 1.1 kcal/min. Standing art had an energy cost that was 1.5 times that of SB (mean = 1.4 kcal/min), whereas bike riding (mean = 2.5 kcal/min) was similar to LPA (cleaning-up, treasure hunt and walking) (mean = 2.3 to 2.5 kcal/min), which had EE that were 2.5 times SB. EE for MVPA (running, active games and obstacle course) was 4.2 times SB (mean = 3.8 to 3.9 kcal/min).

Conclusion:

EE values reported in this study can contribute to the limited available data on the energy cost of lifestyle and ambulatory activities in young children.