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Carmen D. Harris, Prabasaj Paul, Xingyou Zhang and Janet E. Fulton

Background:

Fewer than 30% of U.S. youth meet the recommendation to be active > 60 minutes/day. Access to parks may encourage higher levels of physical activity.

Purpose:

To examine differences in park access among U.S. school-age youth, by demographic characteristics and urbanicity of block group.

Methods:

Park data from 2012 were obtained from TomTom, Incorporated. Population data were obtained from the 2010 U.S. Census and American Community Survey 2006–2010. Using a park access score for each block group based on the number of national, state or local parks within one-half mile, we examined park access among youth by majority race/ethnicity, median household income, median education, and urbanicity of block groups.

Results:

Overall, 61.3% of school-age youth had park access—64.3% in urban, 36.5% in large rural, 37.8% in small rural, and 35.8% in isolated block groups. Park access was higher among youth in block groups with higher median household income and higher median education.

Conclusion:

Urban youth are more likely to have park access. However, park access also varies by race/ethnicity, median education, and median household. Considering both the demographics and urbanicity may lead to better characterization of park access and its association with physical activity among youth.

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Emily M. Jones, Andrea R. Taliaferro, Eloise M. Elliott, Sean M. Bulger, Alfgeir L. Kristjansson, William Neal and Ishonté Allar

Increasing rates of childhood obesity has prompted calls for comprehensive approaches to school-based physical activity (PA). The purpose of this study was to evaluate the feasibility of comprehensive school physical activity program (CSPAP) development and related contextual issues within a rural Appalachian county using a Systems Approach. A multicomponent needs assessment was conducted, including 11 school site visits with interviews with school personnel, physical space audits, and self-reported professional development, curricular, and equipment/resource needs. Data were summarized into case narratives describing context, space/facilities, and school assets/needs. Member checks verified the accuracy of narratives and inductive cross-case analysis was used to explore emergent themes. Six themes emerged: Leadership/Capacity Building, PA Access and Opportunities, Physical Education/PA Equipment and Resources, Physical Fitness Data Management and Reporting, Equity and Access to Safe and Usable Play Spaces, and Community Connections. Results support the feasibility of CSPAPs in rural communities and provide insight to factors influencing CSPAP. This study provides a framework for schools considering the development of CSPAP.

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Marc S. Mitchell, Catherine A. Gaul, Patti-Jean Naylor and Constadina Panagiotopoulos

The aim of this study was to explore the relationship between insulin resistance (IR) and objectively measured habitual moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) in First Nations youth. A cross-sectional study was conducted in 2 rural villages in northern British Columbia, Canada. Thirty-nine healthy youth (16 males and 23 females; age = 11.8yrs ± 2.2; range = 8.8–18.5yrs) participated. PA was measured with ActiGraph GT1M accelerometers. The homeostasis model assessment estimate of IR (HOMA-IR) was used to define IR. Duration of MVPA was inversely related to HOMA-IR (r=−.44, p < .01). From the regression model, 30 min of habitual MVPA corresponded to HOMA-IR levels that were 15% lower. In conclusion, these findings suggest that active First Nations youth have lower HOMA-IR values.

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Jamie E. L. Spinney and Hugh Millward

This research uses four nationally representative samples of time diary data, spanning almost 30 yr, that are fused with energy expenditure information to enumerate the median daily duration of moderate or vigorous-effort activity, quantify the prevalence of Canadians age 65 yr and older who are meeting recommended daily levels of physical activity, and explore the factors affecting rates of active living. Results indicate that 41.1% of older Canadians met recommended levels of physical activity in 1992, 40.6% in 1998, 43.5% in 2005, and 39.6% in 2010. Both rates of active living and daily duration of aerobic activity exhibit significant differences among sociodemographic groups, with age, sex, activity limitation, urban-rural, and season exhibiting the most significant influences. This study illustrates the potential for time diary data to provide detailed surveillance of physical activity patterns, active aging research, and program development, as well.

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Linda Masser

This study investigated whether the teacher behavior of refinement would affect boys’ and girls’ achievement in the standing broad jump across grade levels kindergarten through 6th grade. The study took place in a public school rural setting using intact classes involving 529 students. A nonequivalent control-group design was used for the experiment. All subjects were pretested and posttested. A posttest took place immediately following the experiment and after a time span of 7 months. The posttest scores were analyzed using an analysis of covariance at each grade level. From the analysis of the data, it was concluded that the teacher behavior of refinement did have both immediate and long-term positive effects on student achievement in performing the standing broad jump.

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Hans van der Mars

Audiocueing by way of a microcassette recorder was used to change a female student teacher’s (S1) use of verbal praise of students’ overall class behavior. A second student teacher’s (S2) behavior teaching in the same setting was used as concurrent baseline measure. Both subjects taught K-3 classes at a rural elementary school. An ABAB reversal design was used to determine the relationship between the intervention and dependent variables. Results showed that when audiocues were introduced, verbal praise rate increased significantly. Upon removal of the audiocues, the rate of verbal praise decreased gradually. Percentage of specific verbal praise also increased upon presentation of audiocues. Experimental significance found through visual inspection of graphic data was supported statistically by f-test results. Findings of the exit interview with S1 are included. Suggestions for further research are provided.

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Tan Zhang and Michael L. Silk

At present, and as China negotiates the instantiation of consumer capitalism, her urban spaces have experienced agonizing growth affecting housing, the internationalization of cities, interactions between government and developers, the development of rural land, migrant flows, and social stratification within the city. Focusing on Beijing, we locate the efforts to host major sporting events—especially the 1990 Asian Games and the 2008 Olympic Games—within the dynamics of the spatial reconfigurations in Beijing, a rapid reordering based on “capital space” (Harvey, 2001), gentrification, and the lifestyle practices of a burgeoning middle and upper class of Beijingers. In so doing, we offer a multidimensional account of the complex manner in which power, mobility, and transformation within a modernizing Beijing intersects with the discursive constitution of bodies, concluding with regard to new forms of social cleavages and inequalities that derive from embracing, however selectively, the logistics of the market in the framework set by the Chinese nation-state.

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Louis Harrison, Russell L. Carson and Joe Burden

The purpose of this study was to evaluate the common assumption that teachers of color (TOC) are more culturally competent than White teachers by assessing physical education teachers’ cultural competency. A secondary purpose was to ascertain the possible differences in cultural competence levels of White teachers in diverse school settings versus those in more racially homogenous schools. One hundred and ninety physical education teachers from two states in the southeastern U.S. completed a demographic questionnaire and the Multicultural Teaching Competency Scale (MTCS) (Spanierman et al., 2006). The MTCS consists of two subscales; multicultural teaching knowledge (MTK), and multicultural teaching skills (MTS). MANCOVA analyses indicated significant differences with TOC scoring higher in both MTK and MTS than White teachers. Results also indicated that White teachers in city school settings scored significantly higher in MTK than those from more rural school. Results and implications for teacher preparation and professional development are discussed.

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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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Ying Sun, Jing An, Xi Wang, Ping Zu and Fang-Biao Tao

Background:

The study aims to understand the possible gender difference in the associations between physical activity and depressive symptoms during pubertal transition.

Methods:

Participants were 30,399 children and adolescents of Han ethnicity from urban and rural areas in 8 cities in China. Physical activity (PA) and depressive symptom was assessed by adapted Youth Risk Behavior Survey and Children Depression Inventory (CDI), respectively. Pubertal development was assessed by trained physicians.

Results:

In China, over 30% boys and 40% girls reported having no vigorous PA (VPA) or moderate PA (MPA) in the past week. In girls, participating in VPA 1 to 2 days/week showed protective effect for depressive symptoms; whereas in boys, participating in MPA 1 to 2 days/week showed protective effect for depressive symptoms at and after genital stage III (G3).

Conclusions:

Moderate frequency (1 to 2 days/week) in PA undertaken might be encouraged to prevent depressive symptoms among adolescents.