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Jeanette M. Garcia, Sean Healy, and David Rice

Background:

The aim of this study was to use a social-ecological approach to examine the influence of individual, social, and environmental factors on moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and screen-time in a sample of 9-year-old children in Ireland.

Methods:

The sample was 1509 boys and girls from the Growing Up in Ireland (GUI) national study. MVPA, screen time, and individual, social, and environmental variables were assessed via questionnaires completed by children, their parents, and their teachers. Multiple regression was used to identify factors that correlated with children’s MVPA and screen-time levels.

Results:

For boys, factors such as activity with friends (P < .0001) and popularity (P < .01) were associated with MVPA, while factors such as BMI (P < .01) and MVPA (P < .01) were associated with screen time. Similarly for girls, factors such as activity with friends (P < .0001) and sociability were associated with MVPA, however factors such as BMI (P < .05), and access to play space (P < .05) were more closely associated with screen time.

Conclusion:

Social factors were more closely associated with MVPA, while individual factors were significantly correlated with screen time for both boys and girls. Correlates differed for boys and girls, suggesting that interventions should consider both the target population as well as the activity behavior.

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Amanda Young, Seán Healy, Lisa Silliman-French, and Ali Brian

To inform the development of scalable and sustainable fundamental motor skill interventions for children with Down syndrome, this study examined the feasibility and preliminary effectiveness of Project Skill Intervention Implemented by Parents (Project SKIP), a web-based, parent-mediated intervention intended to improve ball skills among children with Down syndrome. Twenty-four families enrolled in the study (including 13 boys and 11 girls; M age = 4.92). Fourteen children were assigned to an experimental group and participated in the 6-week intervention, and 10 children served as the inactive comparison group. The Test of Gross Motor Development-3 was administered preintervention and postintervention. In addition, parents of children in the experimental group completed a postintervention survey to assess their perceptions of Project SKIP. Following the intervention, there was a significant improvement in ball skills (p = .023, d = 0.86) for children in the experimental group, whereas the comparison group did not show significant improvement. Moreover, parents perceived Project SKIP to be feasible and effective; all parents reported being satisfied with their overall experience in the program, and 11 parents indicated that their child’s fundamental motor skills were positively influenced by the intervention. Engagement was high, with the majority of parents (n = 8, 57%) interacting with Project SKIP content three to four times a week.

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Justin A. Haegele, Carrie J. Aigner, and Sean Healy

The purpose of this study was to compare the degree to which children and adolescents with and without visual impairments (VIs) met national physical activity, screen-time, and sleep guidelines. This observational, cross-sectional analysis of the 2016 National Survey of Children’s Health focused on children (age 6–12 yr) and adolescents (age 13–17 yr) with and without VIs. The sample included 241 (weighted n = 472,127) and 17,610 (weighted n = 28,249,833) children, and 255 (weighted n = 505,401) and 17,417 (weighted n = 20,071,557) adolescents with and without VIs, respectively. Chi-square statistics were computed to examine the degree to which participants with and without VIs met health-behavior guidelines. Children (p = .02) with VIs were less likely to meet screen-time guidelines, but adolescents with VIs were not (p = .87). VI status was not associated with the likelihood of meeting physical activity or sleep guidelines (p < .05). Low numbers of children and adolescents with and without VIs meeting health-behavior guidelines warrant targeted interventions aimed at enhancing engagement.

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Justin A. Haegele, Xihe Zhu, Sean Healy, and Freda Patterson

Background: The purposes of this study were to examine the proportions of youth receiving special education services in the United States who individually and jointly met physical activity, screen time, and sleep duration guidelines, and to examine the impact of meeting none, one, two, and three of the guidelines on overweight and obesity. Methods: This cross-sectional analysis utilized data from the 2016 to 2017 National Survey for Children’s Health data set on 3582 youth aged 10–17 years who received special education services. The frequency of the participants’ compliance with the 24-hour movement guidelines and body weight status (based on the age- and sex-specific percentile cutoffs) were estimated. Meeting guidelines was defined as: 9–11 hours/night (5–13 y) or 8–10 hours/night (14–17 y) of sleep, ≤120 minutes per day of screen time, and ≥60 minutes per day of moderate to vigorous physical activity. A multinomial logistic regression analysis was conducted to estimate the impact of meeting none, one, two, or three guidelines on body weight status, adjusted for potential confounders. Results: Overall, 8.1% of youth met all three guidelines, 42.0% met two guidelines, 38.0% met one guideline, and 11.9% did not meet any guideline. Meeting all three guidelines was associated with an approximately 50% decreased likelihood of overweight than meeting no guideline, or sleep or screen time guidelines independently. Conclusions: This study extends the 24-hour movement framework to children receiving special education services and should prompt the continued study of its utility for understanding health disparities experienced by this population.

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Kayla M. Baker, Sean Healy, David J. Rice, and Jeanette M. Garcia

Background: To examine the associations and differences between gender and weight classification for physical activity (PA) and individual, social, and parental factors. Methods: Data from wave 2 of the “Growing up in Ireland” national study were used, resulting in a sample of 7525 13-year-old adolescents. Information on factors affecting adolescents’ social, emotional, cognitive, and physical development was collected. Results: Overweight (OW) adolescents were more likely to exercise and restrict food for weight loss and less likely to perform moderate to vigorous PA than normal weight adolescents. Parent body mass index was associated with adolescent body mass index for OW and normal weight adolescents, with the strongest association seen with OW females. Parents of OW adolescents considered themselves to be more OW and less physically active than parents of normal weight adolescents. Furthermore, for all groups, a greater amount of moderate to vigorous PA was associated with less television viewing, greater PA of parents, and a greater number of friends. Conclusion: Parental health behaviors play a significant role in adolescents’ bodyweight, representing the necessity for more constructive health behaviors and PA among parents. Future interventions may be strengthened by focusing specifically on gender and body mass index, while taking into consideration the importance of parental behaviors on adolescents.

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Cristina M. Caperchione, Sean Stolp, Joan L. Bottorff, John L. Oliffe, Steven T. Johnson, Cherisse Seaton, Paul Sharp, Margaret Jones-Bricker, Sonia Lamont, Sally Errey, Theresa Healy, Kerensa Medhurst, Holly Christian, and Megan Klitch

Background:

The purpose of this study was to examine changes in physical activity and healthy eating knowledge and behaviors associated with the level of exposure to POWERPLAY, a men-centered workplace health promotion program.

Methods:

This study is based on a quasi-experimental prepost design. Using a computer assisted telephone interview survey, data regarding program exposure and physical activity and health eating knowledge and behaviors were collected from men (N = 103) in 4 workplaces.

Results:

Exposure scores were calculated and participants were categorized as having low (n = 54) or high exposure (n = 49) to POWERPLAY. Compared with the low exposure group, those reporting high exposure scored significantly higher on physical activity knowledge (F (1, 99) =14.17, P < .001, eta2 = .125) and health eating knowledge (F (1, 99) =14.37, P = .001, eta2 = .111). The high exposure group also reported significantly more minutes walked place to place (F (2, 206) = 3.91, P = .022, eta2 = .037) and on minutes walked for leisure (F (2, 230) = 3.08, P = .048, eta2 = .026).

Conclusions:

POWERPLAY shows significant promise as a workplace health promotion approach and may have an even greater impact when program exposure is augmented with environmental and policy changes.