Search Results

You are looking at 1 - 6 of 6 items for

  • Author: Catherine B. Woods x
Clear All Modify Search
Restricted access

Maura Coulter and Catherine B. Woods

Background:

The promotion of physical activity among young children has become a universal challenge. Children spend large amounts of time in school, making it an attractive setting in which to promote positive health behaviors. The purpose of this study was to investigate school-based physical activity behavior and its determinants in young Irish children.

Methods:

Participants self-reported school-based free-play activity, commuting to school behavior, and levels of enjoyment of physical education and physical activity.

Results:

Data were collected from 605 children, mean age was 8.8 years (±2.2; range 5−14 years), 44% were female. Thirty-nine percent of children actively commuted to school, with 40% of males compared with 34.8% of females walking to school. Boys reported more physically active free-play activity (88.6% at break and 90.9% at lunch time) compared with girls (70.8% and 83.7% respectively). Physical education was a top 3 favorite subject for 78% of children and 50.7% reported they would prefer to take part in more active pastimes directly after school.

Conclusions:

Strategies for increasing active commuting are required. Boys and girls are more alike than unlike in their behaviors and attitudes. Teachers should capitalize on the fact that children’s favorite subject is physical education to promote physical activity.

Restricted access

Antonia M. Martin and Catherine B. Woods

Purpose:

Research addressing methods to sustain long-term adherence to physical activity among older adults is needed. This study investigated the motivations and supports deemed necessary to adhere to a community-based cardiac rehabilitation (CBCR) program by individuals with established coronary heart disease.

Methods:

Twenty-four long-term adherers (15 men, 9 women; age 67.7 ± 16.7 yr) took part in focus-group discussions.

Results:

Constant comparative analysis supported previous research in terms of the importance of referral procedures, social support, and knowledge of health benefits in influencing uptake and adherence to CBCR. Results also highlighted the routine of a structured class and task-, barrier-, and recovery-specific self-efficacy as necessary to sustain long-term adherence for this specific clinical group.

Discussion:

Older adults themselves provide rich information on how to successfully support their long-term adherence to structured exercise sessions. Further research into how to build these components into any exercise program is necessary.

Restricted access

Norah M. Nelson and Catherine B. Woods

Background:

Active commuting (AC) to school can increase daily minutes of physical activity yet research is lacking on its determinants. This study examined perceptions of the physical environment as a correlate of AC among adolescents.

Methods:

Cross-sectional data were collected from 1143 males and 1016 females (mean age 16.04 ± 0.66) who lived within 2.5 miles of their school. Participants’ self-reported active (walk or cycle) or inactive (car, bus, or train) mode of travel to school and perceptions of their neighborhood environment. Bivariate logistic regression examined perceived environmental features associated with active versus inactive modes, adjusted for sociodemographic factors. Significant variables were examined in multivariate models, adjusted for population density and distance.

Results:

Positive correlates of AC included well-lit streets, land-use-mix diversity, access to shops/public transport, the presence of public parks/bike lanes, and accessible well-maintained paths. Connectivity was unrelated to mode choice. In multivariate analyses, land-use-mix diversity, and the perceived presence of public parks remained significant among males, whereas excess traffic speed, shops within walking distance, and paths separate from the road remained significant among females.

Conclusions:

Environmental characteristics were associated with active commuting to school, however research must address methodological issues before making recommendations for intervention.

Restricted access

Michelle Hardie Murphy, David Anthony Rowe and Catherine B. Woods

Background:

The contribution of sports related factors to predicting long-term physical activity (PA) are unclear. The purpose of this study is to examine tracking of PA during key transition periods in youth and to determine the longitudinal associations between sports club participation and PA.

Methods:

Participants (n = 873, baseline age 10 to 18 years) completed self-report surveys in 2009 and 2014 that included the PACE+ PA tool and sports club participation questions. Spearman correlations assessed PA tracking. ANCOVA analyses examined predictors (sports participation at baseline) of PA (follow-up), adjusting for (a) age and sex; and (b) age, sex, and baseline PA.

Results:

Tracking of PA was weak-to-moderate (ρ = .16 to .47). Greater sports participation frequency at baseline significantly predicted PA at follow-up (P < .01). Involvement in club sports at an elite level had a medium-to-large effect on PA levels 5 years later [d = .75 adjusting for (a); d = .60 adjusting for (b)].

Conclusion:

PA should be promoted in youth as tracking coefficients suggest it can, to an extent, continue into later life. The standard achieved in sport has a role in predicting later PA. PA promotion strategies should include frequent, high quality opportunities for sports participation.

Restricted access

Catherine B. Woods, Norah M. Nelson, Donal J. O’Gorman, Eimear Foley and Niall M. Moyna

Background:

The Take PART study—Physical Activity Research for Teenagers—was undertaken to assess (1) physical activity and sedentary behaviors, (2) indices of health and fitness, and (3) to provide information, from a social ecological perspective, on the correlates of physical activity in a large sample of 15- to 17-year-old Irish adolescents. This manuscript outlines the rationale and methodology of the Take PART study.

Methods:

A sample of 4720 students (mean age = 16.03 years ± 0.66, range 15 to 17 years; 49.5% female) participated. Fifty participants were assessed during each 3-hour school visit, with a ratio of 1 researcher to 10 students. Standardized testing procedures and extensive researcher training ensured that intertester and intratester reliability for all physical measures was ≥.85. The height, weight, waist circumference, hip circumference, blood pressure, and cardiorespiratory fitness protocols are explained. The questionnaire used well-known, valid, and reliable self-report measures. Where appropriate, additional psychometric testing was undertaken.

Conclusions:

Take PART is a school-based study. Its methods are simple, easy to replicate, financially viable, and scientifically valid. Its unique dataset will allow the evaluation of a social ecological approach as a viable option for improving understanding of youth inactivity. Ultimately, this knowledge will assist in successful intervention design.

Restricted access

Joseph J. Murphy, Ciaran MacDonncha, Marie H. Murphy, Niamh Murphy, Alan M. Nevill and Catherine B. Woods

Background: Although levels of physical activity (PA) have been researched, no information on how university students organize their PA across different life domains is available. The purpose of this study is to explore if and how students organize their PA across transport and recreational domains, and to identify the psychosocial factors related to these patterns. Methods: Students from 31 Irish universities completed a supervised online survey measuring participant characteristics, psychosocial factors, and PA. Two-step cluster analysis was used to identify specific PA patterns in students. Binary logistic regressions identified factors associated with cluster membership while controlling for age, sex, household income, and perceived travel time to a university. Results: Analysis was performed on 6951 students (50.7% male; 21.51 [5.55] y). One Low Active cluster emerged. Four clusters containing a form of PA emerged including Active Commuters, Active in University, Active Outside University, and High Active. Increases in motivation and planning improved the likelihood of students being categorized in a cluster containing PA. Conclusion: One size does not fit all when it comes to students PA engagement, with 5 patterns identified. Health professionals are advised to incorporate strategies for increasing students’ motivation, action planning, and coping planning into future PA promotion efforts.