The purpose is to explore relationships among moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA), sedentary behavior (SB), and actual gross motor competence (MC) and perceived motor competence (PMC) in young children. Data were collected in 101 children (M age = 4.9 ± 0.93 years). MVPA was measured with accelerometry. Gross MC was assessed with the Portuguese version of the Movement Assessment Battery for Children. PMC was evaluated with the Pictorial Scale of Perceived Competence and Social Acceptance for Young Children. Regressions were used to determine predictive relationships related to the following research questions: (a) Can gross MC predict perceived motor competence, (b) can actual and perceived gross MC predict MVPA, and (c) can actual and perceived gross MC predict SB? Results showed no association between gross MC and PMC and between these constructs and MVPA and SB. This lack of association in the early ages is probably due to the young children’s cognitive inability to make accurate self-judgments and evaluations. A child might have low levels of actual gross MC but perceive her- or himself as skillful.
Vitor Lopes, Lisa Barnett and Luís Rodrigues
Vítor Pires Lopes, Linda Saraiva, Celina Gonçalves and Luis P. Rodrigues
The aim of this study was to examine the relationship between actual (AMC) and perceived (PMC) motor competence in Portuguese children. A total of 200 children (111 [0.55%] girls) aged 5–9 years old participated in the study. The Pictorial Scale of Perceived Movement Skill Competence (PMSC) and the Test of Gross Motor Development-2 (TGMD2) were used to assess PMC and AMC, respectively. Mann-Whiney U was used to test the differences between sexes and age groups. The association between TGMD2 and PMSC scores was analyzed through Spearman correlation. Boys and girls of all ages showed to have high PMC. Independent of sex, mean values for each TGMD2 subtest increased throughout the age groups with older children having significantly higher mean scores than younger ones. In general, boys and girls showed similar PMC and AMC, independent of age. Weak to moderate and some negative correlations (0.24 < r < −0.40) were found between PMC and AMC scores for all age and sex groups. In conclusion, there appears to be little relationship between actual and perceived motor competence in Portuguese young children.
Vitor Pires Lopes, Pedro Magalhães, José Bragada and Catarina Vasques
Several methods exist to asses and control physical intensity levels of subjects engaged in physical activities programs, accelerometry is a method that could be easily used in the field. The purposes were: to calibrate Actigraph in middle-aged to old obese/overweight and DM2 adult patients; and to determine the threshold counts for sedentary, light, moderate, and vigorous physical activity (PA).
Sample comprise 26 participants (62.6 ± 6.5 years of age) of both gender. Counts and VO2 were simultaneously assessed during: resting, seating, standing, walking at 2.5 km·h−1, 5 km·h−1, and 6 km·h−1. A hierarchical linear model was used to derive a regression equation between MET and counts. Receiver operating characteristics (ROC) analysis was used to define thresholds for PA levels.
The regression equation was: MET = 1.388400490262 + 0.001312683420044 (counts·min−1), r = .867. The threshold counts for sedentary-light, light-moderate and moderate-vigorous PA were: 200, 1240, 2400 counts·min−1 respectively.
The Actigraph is a valid and useful device for the assessment of the amount of time spent in each PA intensity levels in obese/overweight and DM2 middle-aged to old adult patients.
Dartagnan P. Guedes, Jaime Miranda Neto, Vitor Pires Lopes and António José Silva
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.
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.
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.
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.
Jorge E. Morais, António J. Silva, Daniel A. Marinho, Vítor P. Lopes and Tiago M. Barbosa
To develop a performance predictor model based on swimmers’ biomechanical profile, relate the partial contribution of the main predictors with the training program, and analyze the time effect, sex effect, and time × sex interaction.
91 swimmers (44 boys, 12.04 ± 0.81 y; 47 girls, 11.22 ± 0.98 y) evaluated during a 3-y period. The decimal age and anthropometric, kinematic, and efficiency features were collected 10 different times over 3 seasons (ie, longitudinal research). Hierarchical linear modeling was the procedure used to estimate the performance predictors.
Performance improved between season 1 early and season 3 late for both sexes (boys 26.9% [20.88;32.96], girls 16.1% [10.34;22.54]). Decimal age (estimate [EST] –2.05, P < .001), arm span (EST –0.59, P < .001), stroke length (EST 3.82; P = .002), and propelling efficiency (EST –0.17, P = .001) were entered in the final model.
Over 3 consecutive seasons young swimmers’ performance improved. Performance is a multifactorial phenomenon where anthropometrics, kinematics, and efficiency were the main determinants. The change of these factors over time was coupled with the training plans of this talent identification and development program.
Catarina Vasques, Pedro Magalhães, António Cortinhas, Paula Mota, José Leitão and Vitor Pires Lopes
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.
We analyzed 52 studies (N = 28,236) published between 2000–2011.
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.
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.
António Prista, Leonardo Nhantumbo, Silvio Saranga, Vítor Lopes, José Maia, André e Seabra, João Vinagre, Carole A. Conn and Gaston Beunen
Physical activity (PA) in children/adolescents of both genders from a rural community in Mozambique was estimated by accelerometry and by questionnaire and was compared with PA of Portuguese youth. Total PA, moderate (MPA), vigorous (VPA) and very vigorous (VVPA) were evaluated. Mozambican boys were more active than girls. Intensity of PA declined significantly with age. Survival activities, such as household tasks, were the predominant mode of PA. Compared with Portuguese children/adolescents, Mozambicans had significantly higher total PA; showed less decline of PA with age and engaged in fewer minutes at higher intensity PA. Environmental factors likely explain documented differences.
Michele Caroline de Souza, Raquel Nichele de Chaves, Vitor Pires Lopes, Robert M. Malina, Rui Garganta, André Seabra and José Maia
Health benefits of physical activity (PA) and physical fitness (PF) are reasonably well established, but tracking studies of PA and PF in childhood have not ordinarily considered the role of motor coordination.
To compare the growth status, gross motor coordination (GMC), PA, and PF characteristics of children at 6 years of age relative to aerobic fitness (fit, unfit) and PA (active, sedentary) at 10 years.
285 primary school children (142 girls, 143 boys) resident on the 4 main Azorean islands, Portugal, were measured annually (in the fall) from 6 to 10 years. ANOVA and t tests were computed with SPSS 17.
Children with either high aerobic fitness or with high level of PA at 10 years of age tended to have a more favorable profile at 6 years compared with those with low fitness or low activity, respectively. Children who were both fit and active at 10 years of age had a more favorable activity and fitness profile and had better GMC at 6 years compared with children who were unfit and sedentary.
Results highlight the need to consider not only PA, but also PF and GMC in health promotion through the primary school years.
Anderson Henry Pereira Feitoza, Rafael dos Santos Henrique, Lisa M. Barnett, Alessandro Hervaldo Nicolai Ré, Vítor Pires Lopes, E. Kipling Webster, Leah E. Robinson, Wivianne A. Cavalcante and Maria Teresa Cattuzzo
Perceived motor competence (PMC) is a psychological construct that may be influenced by various environmental factors. This study aimed to analyze differences in PMC of children from four diverse countries. The sample was comprised of 231 Brazilian, 129 Australian, 140 Portuguese, and 114 American children, aged 5–8 years. The PMC was assessed using the Pictorial Scale of Perceived Movement Skill Competence for Young Children. Differences in PMC among countries were verified using Kruskal-Wallis tests, separately by age and gender. For girls (from the age of six), differences were found in the leap, slide, hit, and catch, as well as the sum of object control skills and total score. For boys, differences were found among countries in the gallop, jump, slide, hit, catch, and roll, as well as the sum of locomotor and object control skills, and the total skill score. Overall, American children seem to perceive themselves more competent compared to children from other countries. Leisure and sport activities in each country may influence the construction of PMC.