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Catherine Carty, Hidde P. van der Ploeg, Stuart J.H. Biddle, Fiona Bull, Juana Willumsen, Lindsay Lee, Kaloyan Kamenov and Karen Milton

Background: The World Health Organization has released the first global public health guidelines on physical activity and sedentary behavior for people living with disability. This paper presents the guidelines, related processes, and evidence, and elaborates upon how the guidelines can support inclusive policy, practice, and research. Methods: Methods were consistent with the World Health Organization protocols for developing guidelines. Systematic reviews of the evidence on physical activity for health for people living with disability were appraised, along with a consideration of the evidence used to inform the general 2020 World Health Organization guidelines. Results: Evidence supported the development of recommendations for people living with disability, stressing that there are no major risks to engaging in physical activity appropriate to an individual’s current activity level, health status, and physical function, and that the health benefits accrued generally outweigh the risks. They also emphasize the benefits of limiting sedentary behavior. Conclusions: The guidelines mark a positive step forward for disability inclusion, but considerable effort is needed to advance the agenda. This paper highlights key considerations for the implementation of the new recommendations for people living with disability, in line with the human rights agenda underpinning the Global Action Plan on Physical Activity 2018–2030 and allied policies.

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Junga Lee

The purpose of this meta-analysis was to investigate the influence of cardiorespiratory fitness (CF) levels on dementia risk and dementia mortality. MEDLINE and EMBASE databases were used to search for eligible studies from January 1990 to September 2019. To be included, the study was required to be a prospective cohort study that provided CF measurements and indicated relative risk and confidence intervals for the associations between CF and dementia risk and mortality. A total of six studies were selected for this meta-analysis. Low-level CF was associated with nearly three times greater risk of dementia (2.93, 95% confidence interval [1.31, 6.57]; p < .05) compared with a high-level CF. Enhanced CF levels decreased the risk of dementia, and an increase of one metabolic equivalent of task in the CF level reduced the risk of dementia and dementia mortality. Maintaining more than 12 metabolic equivalents of task of CF level was required to substantially decrease dementia risk and dementia mortality.

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L. Jayne Beselt, Michelle C. Patterson, Meghan H. McDonough, Jennifer Hewson and Scott MacKay

Physical activity (PA) and social support have known benefits for the well-being and health of older adults, and social support is associated with PA behavior and positive affective experiences in PA contexts. The aim of this study was to synthesize qualitative research conducted on the experiences of social support related to PA among older adults (age ≥55 years). Following meta-study methodology, the authors searched nine databases and extracted information from 31 studies. Results were synthesized in terms of common themes and in light of theoretical and methodological perspectives used. The qualitative literature identifies supportive behaviors and social network outcomes which may be useful for informing how best to support older adults to be physically active. This literature rarely reflected the experiences of vulnerable populations, and future research should aim to further understand supportive behaviors which enable older adults to overcome barriers and challenges to being physically active.

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Katherine Holland and Justin A. Haegele

The purpose of this article is to review qualitative inquiries examining the perspectives of students with disabilities toward physical education (PE) published from 2014 to 2019, as an update to the 2015 review by Haegele and Sutherland. Keyword searches were used to identify articles from nine electronic databases, and seven articles met all inclusion criteria. The seven selected articles were subjected to a narrative analysis, and three thematic clusters emerged: (a) an “inconvenience”: the PE teacher’s influence on quality of experience, (b) “we play together and I like it”: friendships central to the quality of PE experience, and (c) “no lift access to the gym”: barriers to successful participation. Findings from this review support the notion that students with disabilities may have positive experiences in PE if they are offered appropriate modifications and accommodations and are provided with increased kind and supportive interactions with staff and peers.

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Kaitlin M. Gallagher, Anita N. Vasavada, Leah Fischer and Ethan C. Douglas

A popular posture for using wireless technology is reclined sitting, with the trunk rotated posteriorly to the hips. This position decreases the head’s gravitational moment; however, the head angle relative to the trunk is similar to that of upright sitting when using a tablet in the lap. This study compared cervical extensor musculotendon length changes from neutral among 3 common sitting postures and maximum neck flexion while using a tablet. Twenty-one participants had radiographs taken in neutral, full-flexion, and upright, semireclined, and reclined postures with a tablet in their lap. A biomechanical model was used to calculate subject-specific normalized musculotendon lengths for 27 cervical musculotendon segments. The lower cervical spine was more flexed during reclined sitting, but the skull was more flexed during upright sitting. Normalized musculotendon length increased in the reclined compared with an upright sitting position for the C4-C6/7 (deep) and C2-C6/7 (superficial) multifidi, semispinalis cervicis (C2-C7), and splenius capitis (Skull-C7). The suboccipital (R 2 = .19–.71) and semispinalis capitis segment length changes were significantly correlated with the Skull-C1 angle (0.24–0.51). A semireclined reading position may be an ideal sitting posture to reduce the head’s gravitational moment arm without overstretching the assessed muscles.