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Andreia Nogueira Pizarro, Jasper Schipperijn, José Carlos Ribeiro, António Figueiredo, Jorge Mota, and Maria Paula Santos

Background:

Identifying where children spend their activity-time may help define relevant domains for effective PA promotion and better understand the relation between PA and environment. Our study aimed to identify how boys and girls allocate their active time in the different domains.

Methods:

374 children (201 girls; mean age = 11.7 years) wore an accelerometer and a GPS for 7 days. PALMS software combined data, categorized nonsedentary time and bouts of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA). Geographical information system allocated activity into 4 domains: school, leisure, transport and home.

Results:

Overall, a higher proportion of time in MVPA was found in the transport domain (45.5%), school (30.5%), leisure (21.3%), and home (2.7%). Gender differences were found for the proportion of time spent across domains. Girls (54.5%) had more MVPA than boys (35.2%) in the transport domain, whereas boys spent more MVPA time in school (37.0%) and leisure (24.9%) than girls (24.7% and 18.1, respectively).

Conclusions:

Interventions to increase transport behavior may be relevant for children’s MVPA. School is an important domain for boys PA, while for girls increasing the supportiveness of the school environment for PA should be a priority. Strategies should consider gender differences when targeting each domain.

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Dartagnan P. Guedes, Jaime Miranda Neto, Vitor Pires Lopes, and António José Silva

Background:

This study investigated the association between sociodemographic and behavioral factors and health standards based on physical fitness component scores in a sample of Brazilian schoolchildren.

Methods:

A sample of 1457 girls and 1392 boys aged 6 to 18 years performed a test battery of 5 items: 1) sit-and-reach, 2) curl-up, 3) trunk-lift, 4) push-up, and 5) progressive endurance run (PACER). The cut-off scores for gender and age suggested by the FitnessGram were adopted.

Results:

The findings showed that the sociodemographic and behavioral factors significantly associated with the ability of schoolchildren of meeting the health standards varied according to the fitness test. In the 5 tests used girls presented lower chance of meeting the health standards. Age and socioeconomic class were negatively associated with the performance in all physical tests. Schoolchildren aged ≤ 9 years or from families of lowest socioeconomic class presented approximately twice the chance of meeting the health standards than those aged ≥ 15 years and from more privileged families, specifically in the push-up (OR = 2.40; 95% CI 2.01–2.82) and PACER (OR = 2.18; 95% CI 1.84–2.54) tests.

Conclusions:

Interventions to promote health-related physical fitness should not only consider gender and age of schoolchildren, but also selected sociodemographic and behavioral factors, especially socioeconomic class and leisure activities.

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María Hernández, Fabrício Zambom-Ferraresi, Pilar Cebollero, Javier Hueto, José Antonio Cascante, and María M. Antón

The purpose of this study was to determine the potential relationship between muscle power of the lower extremities and the physical activity in older men with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Forty-four men (70.3 ± 6.7 years old) with moderate-to-severe COPD completed the 6-min walk test (6MWT), BODE (body mass index, obstruction, dyspnea, and exercise), a one-repetition maximum strength of the quadriceps femoris (1RMQF), and muscle power at 50% and 70% 1RMQF. Physical activity was measured using an accelerometer. The 6MWT was associated with muscle power at 50% 1RMQF (r = .40; P = .013) but not muscle power at 70% 1RMQF (r = .24; P = .15) or 1RMQF (r = .13; P = .44). Light-intensity activity was positively correlated with muscle power at 50% 1RMQF (r = .52; P = .001). Lower limb muscle power is associated with the 6MWT and light-intensity activities in older men with COPD.

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Elena Pardos-Mainer, José Antonio Casajús, Chris Bishop, and Oliver Gonzalo-Skok

Purpose: To examine the effects of an 8-week combined strength and power training intervention on physical performance and interlimb asymmetries in adolescent female soccer players. Methods: Thirty-seven adolescent female soccer players (age 16.1 [1.1] y) were randomly assigned to a control group (n = 18) or experimental group (n = 19). The experimental group performed combined strength and power training twice a week, which consisted of strength and power exercises that trained the major muscles of the lower body and trunk musculature. Preintervention and postintervention tests included unilateral and bilateral horizontal and countermovement jump tests, a 40-m sprint test (10- and 30-m split times), a 10-m sprint with a 180° change-of-direction (COD) test, and a multiple-COD test (V-cut test). Asymmetries were also analyzed in the unilateral tests. Results: Significant group-by-time interaction of the improvement between pretest and posttest was observed for speed (effect size [ES]: −1.30 to −1.16) and COD tests (ES: −0.62 to −0.61) but not in jumping (ES: −0.09 to 0.28) and interlimb-asymmetry tests (ES: −0.13 to 0.57). Conclusions: The short-term in-season combined strength and power training program induced greater speed and COD performance improvements than soccer training alone in adolescent female soccer players.

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Pilar Mahedero, Antonio Calderón, José Luis Arias-Estero, Peter A. Hastie, and Anthony J. Guarino

The purpose of the paper was to examine the effects of student skill level on knowledge, decision making, skill execution and game performance in a minivolleyball Sport Education season. Forty-eight secondary school students from two classes participated in a 12 lesson season. Knowledge, decision-making and skill execution (components of game play) were evaluated prior to and on completion of the season. Paired t test analysis showed that the game performance components of decision making and game play achieved significant gains. Further, results of the regression analyses detected that the sigmoidal model was indeed superior to the linear model for (a) skill execution, (b) game play, and (c) knowledge, by explaining 4.0, 2.8, and 3.25 times more of the variance respectively. That is, improvements of the highest and lowest skilled students were less significant than those of more moderate levels. This outcome, accompanied by a lack of general improvement in skill execution, suggests that future research should examine in more detail the progressive development of the tasks and learning experiences incorporated during seasons of Sport Education.

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Catarina Vasques, Pedro Magalhães, António Cortinhas, Paula Mota, José Leitão, and Vitor Pires Lopes

Background:

This meta-analysis study aims to assess the efficacy of school-based and after-school intervention programs on the BMIs of child and adolescents, addressing the correlation between some moderating variables.

Methods:

We analyzed 52 studies (N = 28,236) published between 2000–2011.

Results:

The overall effect size was 0.068 (P < .001), school (r = .069) and after-school intervention (r = .065). Programs conducted with children aged between 15–19 years were the most effective (r = .133). Interventions programs with boys and girls show better effect sizes (r = .110) than programs that included just girls (r = .073). There were no significant differences between the programs implemented in school and after-school (P = .770). The effect size was higher in interventions lasting 1 year (r = .095), with physical activity and nutritional education (r = .148), and that included 3–5 sessions of physical activity per week (r = .080). The effect size also increased as the level of parental involvement increased.

Conclusions:

Although of low magnitude (r = .068), the intervention programs had a positive effect in prevention and decreasing obesity in children. This effect seems to be higher in older children’s, involving interventions with physical activity and nutritional education combined, with parent’s participation and with 1-year duration. School or after-school interventions had a similar effect.

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Ana C. Seabra, José Maia, André F. Seabra, Greg Welk, Robert Brustad, and António M. Fonseca

Background:

The Youth Physical Activity Promotion (YPAP) model provides an integrated approach to understanding the predisposing, enabling, and reinforcing factors influencing physical activity (PA) behavior. The purpose of this study was to evaluate an adapted version of the YPAP model for explaining PA among Portuguese schoolchildren.

Methods:

A random cross-sectional sample of 683 children (8–10 years of age) attending elementary public schools in the north of Portugal completed a detailed survey assessing attraction to PA, perceived physical competence, parental influences and leisure time PA. Structural equation modeling techniques were conducted (EQS6.1).

Results:

Attraction to PA was directly associated with children’s PA participation (β = 0.271, P < .05). Perceived physical competence imposed an indirect effect on children’s PA through children’s attraction to PA (β = 0.253, P < .05). Parental influence had an indirect effect on children’s PA through perceived physical competence and attraction to PA (β = 0.318 and 0.662, respectively, P < .05). Perceived physical competence and parental influence were not directly associated with children’s PA (β = 0.069 and 0.180, respectively, P > .05).

Conclusions:

The adapted version of YPAP model was useful in explaining PA participation in elementary Portuguese schoolchildren. Intervention programs intended to enhance attraction to PA, perceived physical competence and favorable parental influence should be developed to promote children’s PA participation.

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Luis Miguel Ruiz, Jose Luis Graupera, Juan Antonio Moreno, and Isabel Rico

The purpose of the current study was to explore social interaction preferences for learning in Physical Education (PE) among Spanish secondary students. The sample consists of 6,654 students (3,500 girls and 3,154 boys, aged 12–17 years) from public and private urban and rural schools in two communities in Spain. All participants completed the Graupera/Ruiz Scale of Social Interaction Preferences in PE Learning (GR–SIPPEL) which explores four learning preference dimensions: cooperation, competition, affiliation, and individualism. Results indicated that the ordinal profile of students’ preferences in PE classes was: cooperative (very high preference), competitive and affiliate (high-moderate preference), and individualistic (moderate-low preference). Gender differences emerged: girls were less competitive and individualistic than boys, and slightly more cooperative and affiliate. Weak grade level differences were also observed.

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Alba Gómez-Cabello, Germán Vicente-Rodríguez, Isabel Navarro-Vera, Diana Martinez-Redondo, Carmen Díez-Sánchez, and José Antonio Casajús

The aim of this study was to provide information about the relationship of bone mineral content (BMC) and density (BMD) with some physical-fitness-related variables in a sample of women with fibromyalgia (FM) and age-matched women without FM. Twenty-eight women clinically diagnosed with FM (age 51.1 ± 8.4 yr, M ± SD) and 22 age-matched controls participated in the study. Whole-body BMC and BMD, lean mass, handgrip strength, quadriceps strength, and cardiovascular fitness were measured in all participants. The association between physical-fitness variables and bone-related variables was tested by linear regression controlling for body weight as a possible confounder. There were no differences in BMC or BMD between groups. Women with FM had lower values of handgrip strength, quadriceps strength, and VO2peak than the control group. Handgrip strength and aerobic capacity were associated with BMC and BMD and quadriceps strength was associated with BMD in women with FM; however, only VO2peak was associated with BMC in the group of women without FM. Bone mass of women with FM may be more susceptible to changes in physical fitness than that of the women without fibromyalgia.

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José Joaquín Muros, Mikel Zabala, María Jesús Oliveras-López, Francisco Antonio Ocaña-Lara, and Herminia López-García de la Serra

The goal of this study was to determine the effect of nutrition education combined with sessions of vigorous extracurricular physical activity (VEPA) on the improvement of health related parameters in children in primary education. The sample group consisted of 54 children in the fifth year of primary education divided into two groups: an intervention group (IG) of 25 students and a control group (CG) of 29 students. The intervention lasted 7 weeks and consisted of 13 sessions of VEPA combined with sessions of nutritional education that were attended by the students in the IG as well as their parents. During the intervention the IG showed a decrease in the body fat percentage, total cholesterol, cholesterol linked to low-density lipoproteins and blood pressure, together with an increase in cholesterol linked to high-density lipoproteins, and an improvement in the maximum oxygen uptake and dietary intake profile compared with the CG, which showed an increase in the percentage of fats and no significant changes (p < .05) in other parameters. The results of this study provide evidence that a 7-week program of nutritional education and vigorous short-duration physical activity can improve health related parameters in children.