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Low Physical Activity Levels and Associated Factors in Brazilian Adolescents From Public High Schools

Roberto Jerônimo dos Santos Silva, Diego Augusto Santos Silva, and Antônio C. Oliveira

Background:

Several studies have shown that physical activity levels have declined in many countries, even with the regular practice of physical education in schools. The purpose of this study was to identify the prevalence of low physical activity levels and associated factors in adolescents enrolled in public high schools in Northeastern Brazil.

Methods:

The sample was composed of 2259 adolescents (62.3% female) aged 16.26 ± 1.1 years. A questionnaire was applied to collect data on physical activity levels, sociodemographic information, tobacco use and alcohol consumption, nutritional status and sedentary behavior. Descriptive statistics and Poisson regression hierarchized model with Prevalence Rate (PR) and P ≤ .05 were used.

Results:

Higher prevalence of low physical activity level (89.1%) was observed. It was observed that 19.6% of individuals did not attend physical education classes regularly. Association was identified between low physical activity level and older girls (P = .02) and not attending physical education classes (P < .01). In males, the group most likely to have that low physical activity level was those whose parents studied until three years (P = .04).

Conclusions:

Low physical activity level was present in most adolescents, more evident in girls. Lifestyle changes are needed, with substitution of sedentary activities for physical and sport activities in schools.

Open access

Economic Freedom, Climate Culpability, and Physical Activity Indicators Among Children and Adolescents: Report Card Grades From the Global Matrix 4.0

Eun-Young Lee, Patrick Abi Nader, Salomé Aubert, Silvia A. González, Peter T. Katzmarzyk, Asaduzzaman Khan, Wendy Y. Huang, Taru Manyanga, Shawnda Morrison, Diego Augusto Santos Silva, and Mark S. Tremblay

Background: Macrolevel factors such as economic and climate factors can be associated with physical activity indicators. This study explored patterns and relationships between economic freedom, climate culpability, and Report Card grades on physical activity-related indicators among 57 countries/jurisdictions participating in the Global Matrix 4.0. Methods: Participating countries/jurisdictions provided Report Card grades on 10 common indicators. Information on economic freedom and climatic factors were gathered from public data sources. Correlations between the key variables were provided by income groups (ie, low- and middle-income countries/jurisdictions and high-income countries/jurisdictions [HIC]). Results: HIC were more economically neoliberal and more responsible for climate change than low- and middle-income countries. Annual temperature and precipitation were negatively correlated with behavioral/individual indicators in low- and middle-income countries but not in HIC. In HIC, correlations between climate culpability and behavioral/individual and economic indicators were more apparent. Overall, poorer grades were observed in highly culpable countries/jurisdictions in the highly free group, while in less/moderately free groups, less culpable countries/jurisdictions showed poorer grades than their counterparts in their respective group by economic freedom. Conclusions: Global-level physical activity promotion strategies should closely evaluate different areas that need interventions tailored by income groups, with careful considerations for inequities in the global political economy and climate change.

Open access

Association Between Physical Activity Indicators and Human Development Index at a National Level: Information From Global Matrix 4.0 Physical Activity Report Cards for Children and Adolescents

Diego Augusto Santos Silva, Salomé Aubert, Kwok Ng, Shawnda A. Morrison, Jonathan Y. Cagas, Riki Tesler, Dawn Tladi, Taru Manyanga, Silvia A. González, Eun-Young Lee, and Mark S. Tremblay

Background: The aim of this study was to explore the associations between the 10 key indicators of the Global Matrix 4.0 project and human development index (HDI) at a national level according to sex, age, area of residence, and ability levels. Methods: Information from the 57 countries/localities included in the Global Matrix 4.0 project was compiled and presented according to the HDI of each country/locality for each of the 10 key indicators. Grades were assigned based on the benchmarks of the Global Matrix 4.0 project ranged between “A+” (best performance) and “F” (worst performance). Results: The population subgroups of females, children, rural residents, with/without disabilities from countries/localities with higher HDI performed better in the organized sport and physical activity indicator than their peers from countries/localities with lower HDI. Children and adolescents living in rural areas of countries/localities with higher HDI showed better performance for active play, and children and adolescents living in urban areas of countries/localities with lower HDI showed better performance for the active transportation. Countries/localities with higher HDI showed better grades for sources of influence than the countries/localities with lower HDI. Conclusions: Physical activity patterns in some population subgroups of children and adolescents differed according to the development level of countries/localities.

Open access

Results From Brazil’s 2016 Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth

Nelson Nardo Jr., Diego Augusto Santos Silva, Gerson Luis de Moraes Ferrari, Edio Luiz Petroski, Ricardo Lucas Pacheco, Priscila Custódio Martins, Luis Carlos Oliveira, Timóteo Leandro Araújo, Anselmo Alexandre Mendes, Samara Pereira Brito Lazarin, Tamires Leal Cordeiro dos Santos, and Victor Matsudo

Background:

Very few studies have comprehensively analyzed the physical activity of children and adolescents in Brazil. The purpose of this article is to show the methodology and summarize findings from the first Brazilian Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth.

Methods:

Three Brazilian research institutions coordinated the activities to develop the Brazilian 2016 Report Card. The data available were collected independently and then synthesized by the Research Work Group using the grade system developed for the First Global Matrix released in 2014, which included 9 indicators of physical activity. Where possible, grades were assigned based on the percentage of children and youth meeting each indicator: 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%; INC is incomplete data.

Results:

Among the 9 indicators, only 5 had sufficient data for grading. Overall Physical Activity received a C- grade, Active Transportation received a C+ grade, Sedentary Behavior received a D+ grade, and Government Strategies and Investments received a D grade.

Conclusions:

The low grades observed highlight the need for continued efforts aimed at improving physical activity in Brazilian children.

Open access

Promoting Physical Activity Among Children and Adolescents With Disabilities: The Translation of Policy to Practice Internationally

Cindy Sit, Salomé Aubert, Catherine Carty, Diego Augusto Santos Silva, José Francisco López-Gil, Piritta Asunta, Yves Palad, Roselle Guisihan, Jeongmin Lee, Kelly P. Arbour Nicitopoulos, Leigh M. Vanderloo, Heidi Stanish, Justin Haegele, Piotr K. Urbański, Jurate Pozeriene, Yeshayahu Hutzler, and Kwok Ng

Background: Physical inactivity among children and adolescents with disabilities (CAWD) is a global public health issue. Policy efforts to promote physical activity (PA) among CAWD have increased. This study summarizes the international policy trend for promoting PA among CAWD, with behavioral and policy insights specific to CAWD from country/regional indicators from the Active Healthy Kids Global Alliance Matrix on Physical Activity for Children and Adolescents to determine policy translation into practice. Methods: International and national PA policy documents on CAWD were assessed. Data from the Global Matrix Para Report Cards on the behavioral and government indicators from 14 countries or regions (grouped by human development index) were reviewed and compared. Results: Policy instruments began promoting PA for CAWD in 1989 via the Convention on the Rights of the Child. International policy has been advocating PA specifically for CAWD recently. In 2020, the World Health Organization published specific PA guidelines for CAWD. Data from the 14 Para Report Car found 14 grades on the average behavioral indicator and 12 on the government indicator. A gap between the average behavioral indicator (D−) and the government indicator (C+) was found in the Para Report Card data. Conclusions: Although international policies are consistent in their attention to the needs of CAWD, national/regional policies vary. Coverage ranges from nonexistent to embedded in broader inclusion concepts. A gap in policies to promote PA of CAWD is prevalent and is more prominent in countries or regions with a lower human development index ranking.

Open access

Global Matrix 4.0 Physical Activity Report Card Grades for Children and Adolescents: Results and Analyses From 57 Countries

Salomé Aubert, Joel D. Barnes, Iryna Demchenko, Myranda Hawthorne, Chalchisa Abdeta, Patrick Abi Nader, José Carmelo Adsuar Sala, Nicolas Aguilar-Farias, Susana Aznar, Peter Bakalár, Jasmin Bhawra, Javier Brazo-Sayavera, Mikel Bringas, Jonathan Y. Cagas, Angela Carlin, Chen-Kang Chang, Bozhi Chen, Lars Breum Christiansen, Candice Jo-Anne Christie, Gabriela Fernanda De Roia, Christine Delisle Nyström, Yolanda Demetriou, Visnja Djordjic, Arunas Emeljanovas, Liri Findling Endy, Aleš Gába, Karla I. Galaviz, Silvia A. González, Kylie D. Hesketh, Wendy Yajun Huang, Omphile Hubona, Justin Y. Jeon, Danijel Jurakić, Jaak Jürimäe, Tarun Reddy Katapally, Piyawat Katewongsa, Peter T. Katzmarzyk, Yeon-Soo Kim, Estelle Victoria Lambert, Eun-Young Lee, Sharon Levi, Pablo Lobo, Marie Löf, Tom Loney, José Francisco López-Gil, Juan López-Taylor, Evelin Mäestu, Agus Mahendra, Daga Makaza, Marla Frances T. Mallari, Taru Manyanga, Bojan Masanovic, Shawnda A. Morrison, Jorge Mota, Falk Müller-Riemenschneider, Laura Muñoz Bermejo, Marie H. Murphy, Rowena Naidoo, Phuong Nguyen, Susan Paudel, Željko Pedišić, Jorge Pérez-Gómez, John J. Reilly, Anne Kerstin Reimers, Amie B. Richards, Diego Augusto Santos Silva, Pairoj Saonuam, Olga L. Sarmiento, Vedrana Sember, Mohd Razif Shahril, Melody Smith, Martyn Standage, Gareth Stratton, Narayan Subedi, Tuija H. Tammelin, Chiaki Tanaka, Riki Tesler, David Thivel, Dawn Mahube Tladi, Lenka Tlučáková, Leigh M. Vanderloo, Alun Williams, Stephen Heung Sang Wong, Ching-Lin Wu, Paweł Zembura, and Mark S. Tremblay

Background: The Global Matrix 4.0 on physical activity (PA) for children and adolescents was developed to achieve a comprehensive understanding of the global variation in children’s and adolescents’ (5–17 y) PA, related measures, and key sources of influence. The objectives of this article were (1) to summarize the findings from the Global Matrix 4.0 Report Cards, (2) to compare indicators across countries, and (3) to explore trends related to the Human Development Index and geo-cultural regions. Methods: A total of 57 Report Card teams followed a harmonized process to grade the 10 common PA indicators. An online survey was conducted to collect Report Card Leaders’ top 3 priorities for each PA indicator and their opinions on how the COVID-19 pandemic impacted child and adolescent PA indicators in their country. Results: Overall Physical Activity was the indicator with the lowest global average grade (D), while School and Community and Environment were the indicators with the highest global average grade (C+). An overview of the global situation in terms of surveillance and prevalence is provided for all 10 common PA indicators, followed by priorities and examples to support the development of strategies and policies internationally. Conclusions: The Global Matrix 4.0 represents the largest compilation of children’s and adolescents’ PA indicators to date. While variation in data sources informing the grades across countries was observed, this initiative highlighted low PA levels in children and adolescents globally. Measures to contain the COVID-19 pandemic, local/international conflicts, climate change, and economic change threaten to worsen this situation.