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Margina Ruiter, Charly Eielts, Sofie Loyens and Fred Paas

Background: Although active workstations, such as desk bikes, have proven to be beneficial for health, there is limited information regarding their effects on children’s acute cognitive performance during self-paced exercise. Methods: This study used a within-subjects, fully counterbalanced design with a sample of 38 preadolescent children (mean age = 12.50 y, SD = 0.62; 43% male), who performed cognitive tests while being seated or while cycling for 45 minutes with a 7-day interval. Effects of using a desk bike were evaluated on cognitive control: verbal and visuospatial working memory capacities were tested, and inhibition was assessed using a modified flanker task. In addition, subjective task experience was explored using self-report measures. Results: Cognitive control performance was not degraded but also not improved with the short-term use of desk bikes. Because of the null effects, there is no direction and magnitude of the outcomes to discuss. Conclusions: These findings suggest that schools can successfully implement desk bikes to increase physical activity and reduce sedentary time among children without compromising cognitive control processes necessary for academic achievement.

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Ayse Meydanlioglu and Ayse Ergun

Background: Many health problems encountered in childhood, adolescence, and adulthood periods arise from problematic eating behavior, an unhealthy dietary approach, and inactive lifestyles. The aim of this study was to determine the effect of the Diet and Physical Activity Program for Health, under the leadership of a nurse, on the dietary and physical activity behaviors of children. Methods: This study was planned in a quasi-experimental design with pretesting, posttesting, follow-up testing, and a control group. The study was conducted with 114 students in 2 schools. A total of 12 hours of training was given to the experimental group for 6 weeks. Institutional permission required for performing the study and an ethical consent from the commission for clinical trials of Marmara University institute of health sciences were received. Results: The results of the study reveal that Diet and Physical Activity Program for Health in posttest and follow-up periods was effective in improving dietary and physical activity behaviors of children within the program. However, the program’s effect on dietary and physical activity self-efficacy was limited. Conclusion: The results of the study indicate that this program was effective in development of children’s behavior regarding diet and physical activity.

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Tiago V. Barreira, Stephanie T. Broyles, Catrine Tudor-Locke, Jean-Philippe Chaput, Mikael Fogelholm, Gang Hu, Rebecca Kuriyan, Estelle V. Lambert, Carol A. Maher, José A. Maia, Timothy Olds, Vincent Onywera, Olga L. Sarmiento, Martyn Standage, Mark S. Tremblay, Peter T. Katzmarzyk and for the ISCOLE Research Group

Background: To determine if children’s moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and sedentary time varied across levels of household income in countries at different levels of Human Development Index (HDI), consistent with the theory of epidemiological transition. Methods: Data from 6548 children (55% girls) aged 9–11 years from 12 countries at different HDI levels are used in this analysis to assess MVPA and sedentary time (measured using ActiGraph accelerometers) across levels of household income. Least-square means are estimated separately for boys and girls at the estimated 10th, 50th, and 90th percentiles of HDI for the sample. Results: For boys, time in MVPA is negatively associated with income at the 10th and 50th percentiles of HDI (both P < .002). For girls, time in MVPA is negatively associated with income at the 10th and 50th percentiles of HDI (all P < .01) and positively related with income at the 90th percentile (P = .04). Sedentary time is positively associated with income at the 10th percentile of HDI for boys (P = .03), but not for girls. Conclusions: Results support the possibility of an epidemiological transition in physical activity, with lower levels of MVPA observed at opposite levels of income depending on the HDI percentile. This phenomenon was not observed for sedentary time.

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Kazuhiro Harada, Kouhei Masumoto and Narihiko Kondo

Background: Although the beneficial effects of physical activity and exercise on mental health are well known, the optimal conditions for them for benefitting mental health are still unclear. Engaging in exercise with others might have more desirable effects on mental health than engaging in exercise alone. This study examined the associations between exercising alone, exercising with others, and mental health among middle-aged and older adults. Methods: Baseline and 1-year follow-up surveys were conducted with 129 individuals. Time spent exercising alone or with others was measured using a 7-day diary survey. Total physical activity was objectively measured using an accelerometer. Mental well-being was assessed using the simplified Japanese version of the World Health Organization Five Well-Being Index, and mental distress was assessed using the Japanese version of the Kessler Distress Scale (K6). Results: Cross-lagged and simultaneous effects models revealed that exercising with others positively influenced mental well-being. Exercising alone and total physical activity did not significantly influence mental well-being. Neither total physical activity, exercising alone, nor exercising with others was significantly associated with mental distress. Conclusion: Engaging in exercise with others could be effective in improving mental well-being relative to engaging in exercise alone.

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Jennifer Ann McGetrick, Krystyna Kongats, Kim D. Raine, Corinne Voyer and Candace I.J. Nykiforuk

Background: Attitudes and beliefs of policy influencers and the general public toward physical activity policy may support or impede population-level action, requiring improved understanding of aggregate preferences toward policies that promote physical activity. Methods: In 2016, the Chronic Disease Prevention Survey was administered to a census sample of policy influencers (n = 302) and a stratified random sample of the public (n = 2400) in Alberta and Québec. Using net favorable percentages and the Nuffield Council on Bioethics’ intervention ladder framework to guide analysis, the authors examined support for evidence-based healthy public policies to increase physical activity levels. Results: Less intrusive policy options (ie, policies that are not always the most impactful) tended to have higher levels of support than policies that eliminated choice. However, there was support for certain types of policies affecting influential determinants of physical activity such as the built environment (ie, provided they enabled rather than restricted choice) and school settings (ie, focusing on children and youth). Overall, the general public indicated stronger levels of support for more physical activity policy options than policy influencers. Conclusions: The authors’ findings may be useful for health advocates in identifying support for evidence-based healthy public policies affecting more influential determinants of physical activity.

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Andrew F. Clark, Joannah Campbell, Patricia Tucker, Piotr Wilk and Jason A. Gilliland

Background: Children’s sedentary lifestyles and low physical activity levels may be countered using population-level interventions. This study examines factors influencing the use of a free community-wide physical activity access pass for grade 5 students (G5AP). Methods: A natural experiment with longitudinal data collection. A sample of 881 children completed the 9-month follow-up survey self-reporting where they used the G5AP. Two analyses were conducted: Getis-Ord GI* geographic cluster analysis of the spatial distribution of users, and logistic regression examining the relationship between use and accessibility (informational, economic, and geographic) and mobility options, while accounting for intrapersonal and interpersonal factors. Results: Overall, 44.9% of children used the G5AP with clusters of high use in urban areas and low use in the suburbs. Other factors significantly related to G5AP included gender (girls), informational accessibility (active recruitment), economic accessibility (median household income), geographic accessibility (facilities within 1.6 km of home), and mobility options (access to Boys & Girls Club bus). Conclusions: This study found that a diverse population of children used the G5AP. To continue being successful, community-based physical activity interventions need to ensure that the intervention increases geographic, economic, and informational accessibility and provides mobility options that are available to the target population.

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Lee Smith, Brendon Stubbs, L. Hu, Nicola Veronese, Davy Vancampfort, Genevieve Williams, Domenico Vicinanza, Sarah E. Jackson, Li Ying, Guillermo F. López-Sánchez and Lin Yang

Background: To investigate the association between levels of active transport and leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) with C-reactive protein, white blood cell count, body mass index, waist circumference, and lipids in a large representative sample of adults residing in the United States. Methods: Cross-sectional data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. Adjusted multinomial logistic regressions were carried out to quantify associations between levels of self-reported active transport (or LTPA) and quintiles of anthropometric measures and serum markers. Results: A total of 3248 adults were included. For serum inflammatory biomarkers, the authors observed a lower likelihood of being in the top quintile groups of circulating C-reactive protein (adjusted odds ratio [aOR]: 0.60; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.40–0.90) and white blood cell count (aOR: 0.65; 95% CI, 0.44–0.95) with engaging in low to medium levels of active transport but not with high levels of active transport. Higher levels of LTPA were associated with lower likelihood of having high levels of serum inflammatory biomarkers (aOR: 0.60; 95% CI, 0.42–0.86 in the top C-reactive protein group and aOR: 0.58; 95% CI, 0.39–0.87 in top white blood cell group). Conclusions: Promoting active transport and/or LTPA may be a beneficial strategy to improving some, but not all, cardiometabolic health outcomes.

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J. Luke Pryor, Brittany Christensen, Catherine G. R. Jackson and Stephanie Moore-Reed

Background: Yoga is a popular alternative to walking, but the tempo at which asanas must be performed to elicit comparable metabolic and cardiorespiratory demands is unknown. Therefore, the authors aim to compare the metabolic demands of moderate-intensity walking to Surya Namaskar yoga performed at varying tempos. Methods: Inactive obese adults with limited prior yoga experience (n = 10) completed 10 minutes of treadmill walking at a self-selected pace (rating of perceived exertion = 12–13) and three, 10-minute bouts of yoga at a low (6 s/pose; LSUN), medium (4 s/pose; MSUN), and high (3 s/pose; HSUN) tempo with 10-minutes rest between exercise bouts. Results: Mean metabolic equivalents observed in MSUN (3.64 [0.607]), HSUN (4.22 [0.459]), and treadmill (5.29 [1.147]) were greater than 3.0 (P ≤ .01), but not LSUN (3.28 [0.529], P = .13). Treadmill elicited greater caloric and kilocaloric expenditure (1.36 [0.23] L·min−1; 64 [11] kcal) than LSUN (0.87 [0.24] L·min−1; 39 [11] kcal) and MSUN (1.00 [0.29] L·min−1; 45 [13] kcal) (P ≤ .01). Absolute V˙O2 between yoga tempos were not different, but relative V˙O2 was higher in HSUN (14.89 [1.74] mL·min−1·kg) versus LSUN (11.39 [1.83] mL·min−1·kg) (P = .02). Conclusions: Yoga can meet (LSUN) or exceed (MSUN and HSUN) moderate-intensity exercise recommendations. For unfit or obese populations, varying tempos of yoga practice may serve as a lower-impact option for beginning an exercise program.

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Robin C. Puett, Dina Huang, Jessica Montresor-Lopez, Rashawn Ray and Jennifer D. Roberts

Background: Sociodemographic and environmental factors play important roles in determining both indoor and outdoor play activities in children. Methods: The Built Environment and Active Play Study assessed neighborhood playability for children (7–12 y), based on parental report of their children’s active play behaviors, neighborhood characteristics, and geographic locations. Simple logistic regression modeling tested the associations between sociodemographic characteristics and the frequency of and access to venues for indoor and outdoor play. Results: Children of higher socioeconomic status were almost 3 times more likely to live more than a 30-minute walk from indoor recreational facilities compared with their less affluent peers (odds ratio [OR] = 2.9; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.2–6.8). Non-Hispanic black children were less likely to live more than 30 minutes from indoor facilities (OR = 0.21; 95% CI, 0.08–0.57) and more were likely to engage in indoor activity (OR = 3.40; 95% CI, 1.17–9.88) than were white children. Boys were substantially more likely to play outdoors at a playing fields compared with girls (OR = 5.37; 95% CI, 2.10–13.69). Conclusions: Findings from this study could be used to enhance indoor and outdoor activity spaces for children and to reduce disparities in access to such spaces.

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Jessica L. Chandler, Keith Brazendale, Clemens Drenowatz, Justin B. Moore, Xuemei Sui, Robert G. Weaver and Michael W. Beets

Background: The primary purpose of this study was to determine which physical activity (PA) opportunity elicits the most moderate to vigorous PA (MVPA) in after-school programs. This study used a 3-group cross-over design in which participants were exposed to 3 variations of activity structures: free play, organized, or a mixture. Methods: PA was measured using ActiGraph GT3X+ accelerometers. All data were transformed into percentage of time spent sedentary or in MVPA. Repeated-measures mixed-effects models were used to examine differences in MVPA and sedentary among the 3 activity sessions. Participants included 197 unique children, aged 5–12 years, and were 53% male and 55% white. Results: Statistically significant differences were observed in the percentage of time boys spent in MVPA during free play and mixed compared with organized only sessions (35.8% and 34.8% vs 29.4%). No significant difference was observed in the percentage of time girls spent in MVPA during free play compared with organized or mixed (27.2% and 26.1% vs 26.1%). Both boys and girls experienced ∼10% less time sedentary during free play compared with the others. Conclusion: Offering free play during PA opportunities can help children attain as much if not more MVPA compared with only offering organized, adult-led games.