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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.

Open access

Marianella Herrera-Cuenca, Betty Méndez-Perez, Vanessa Castro Morales, Joana Martín-Rojo, Bianca Tristan, Amilid Torín Bandy, Maritza Landaeta-Jiménez, Coromoto Macías-Tomei and Mercedes López-Blanco

Background:

The Venezuelan Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth is the first assessment of information related to physical activity in Venezuela. It provides a compilation of existing information throughout the country and assesses how well it is doing at promoting opportunities for children and youth. The aim of this article is to summarize the information available.

Methods:

Thirteen physical activity indicators were graded by a committee of experts using letters A to F (A, the highest, to F, the lowest) based on national surveys, peer review studies, and policy documents.

Results:

Some indicators report incomplete information or a lack of data. Overweight and Obesity were classified as A; Body Composition and Nongovernmental Organization Policies as B; Municipal Level Policies as C; and Overall Physical Activity Levels and National Level Policies as D.

Conclusions:

63% of children and youth have low physical activity levels. Venezuela needs to undergo a process of articulation between the several existing initiatives, and for said purposes, political will and a methodological effort is required. Investments, infrastructure, and opportunities will be more equal for all children and youth if more cooperation between institutions is developed and communication strategies are applied.

Open access

Richard Tyler, Marianne Mannello, Rebecca Mattingley, Chris Roberts, Robert Sage, Suzan R Taylor, Malcolm Ward, Simon Williams and Gareth Stratton

Background:

This is the second Active Healthy Kids Wales Report Card. The 2016 version consolidates and translates research related to physical activity (PA) among children and youth in Wales, and aims to raise the awareness of children’s engagement in PA and sedentary behaviors.

Methods:

Ten PA indicators were graded using the Active Healthy Kids—Canada Report Card methodology involving a synthesis and expert consensus of the best available evidence.

Results:

Grades were assigned as follows: Overall PA, D+; Organized Sport Participation, C; Active and Outdoor Play, C; Active Transportation, C; Sedentary Behaviors, D-; Physical Literacy, INC; Family and Peer Influences, D+; School, B; Community and the Built Environment, C; and National Government Policy, Strategies, and Investments, B-.

Conclusions:

Despite the existence of sound policies, programs, and infrastructure, PA levels of children and youth in Wales are one of the lowest and sedentary behavior one of the highest globally. From the 2014 Report Card, the Family and Peer Influences grade improved from D to D+, whereas Community and the Built Environment dropped from B to C. These results indicate that a concerted effort is required to increase PA and decrease sedentary time in children and young people in Wales.

Open access

Taru Manyanga, Daga Makaza, Carol Mahachi, Tholumusa F. Mlalazi, Vincent Masocha, Paul Makoni, Eberhard Tapera, Bhekuzulu Khumalo, Sipho H. Rutsate and Mark S. Tremblay

Background:

The report card was a synthesis of the best available evidence on the performance of Zimbabwean children and youth on key physical activity (PA) indicators. The aim of this article was to summarize the results from the 2016 Zimbabwe Report Card.

Methods:

The Report Card Working Group gathered and synthesized the best available evidence, met, discussed and assigned grades to 10 indicators based on the Active Healthy Kids Global Alliance global matrix grading system.

Results:

The indicators were graded as follows: overall PA (C+), organized sport participation (B), active play (D+), active transportation (A-), sedentary behaviors (B), school (D), family and peers (Incomplete), community and the built environment (F), government (D) and nongovernmental organizations (Incomplete).

Conclusions:

Although the majority of children used active transport, played organized sports and engaged in acceptable levels of PA, most of them did not meet the recommended hours of unstructured/unorganized play per day. At present, there are limited data to accurately inform the Zimbabwe Report Card therefore studies employing robust research designs with representative samples are needed. Zimbabwe also needs to prioritize policies and investments that promote greater and safe participation in PA among children and youth.

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.