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Kelley Pettee Gabriel, Adriana Pérez, David R. Jacobs Jr, Joowon Lee, Harold W. Kohl III and Barbara Sternfeld

study has several strengths and limitations. Strengths include the use of the well-characterized and diverse CARDIA cohort to test the proof of concept that a composite score will yield a more robust estimate of the physical activity exposure compared with health outcomes, than either method alone. Use

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In the article by Weiss MR, Phillips AC, Kipp LE, “Effectiveness of a School-Based Fitness Program on Youths’ Physical and Psychosocial Health Outcomes,” in Ped Exerc Sci, 27(4), pp. 546–558, http://dx.doi.org/10.1123/pes.2015-0011, Kipp’s affiliation was incorrectly listed as the Dept. of Kinesiology and Health Promotion, Lexington, KY. Kipp’s correct affiliation is with the Dept. of Health and Human Performance, Texas State University, San Marcos, TX. We apologize for this error.

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Julian David Pillay, Tracy Lynn Kolbe-Alexander, Willem van Mechelen and Estelle Victoria Lambert

Background:

Pedometer-based recommendations for accumulating steps/d largely focus on volume, with less emphasis on intensity and fitness/health outcomes. We aim to examine this relationship.

Methods:

A convenience sample (N = 70, 35 men, 32 ± 8yrs) wore a pedometer (4 days). The pedometer classified steps as “aerobic” (≥ 60 steps/minute, minimum duration of 1 minute) or “non-aerobic” (< 60 steps/minute and/or < 1 minute). Estimated maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max), derived from a 12-minute submaximal step-test, and health outcomes: blood pressure (BP), body mass index (BMI), percentage body fat (%BF), and waist circumference (WC) were correlated with pedometer data. Participants were grouped according to number and intensity of steps: LOW (< 5000 steps/d), HIGH-LOW (≥ 5000 steps/d, no aerobic steps), HIGH-HIGH (≥ 5000 steps/d, including some aerobic steps). Analyses of covariance, adjusting for age, gender, and total steps/d were used to compare groups.

Results:

Average steps/d was 6520 ± 2306. Total steps/d and total time spent accumulating “aerobic” steps (minutes/day) were inversely associated with %BF, BMI, WC, and systolic BP (P < .05). After adjusting for gender and total steps/d, %BF was different between all 3 groups, VO2max was different between the LOW and HIGH-HIGH groups, WC was lower in the HIGH-HIGH versus the other 2 groups (P < .03, respectively).

Conclusion:

Intensity seems an important factor to consider in steps/d cut-points.

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Inas Rashad Kelly, Mary Ann Phillips, Michelle Revels and Dawud Ujamaa

Background:

This study analyzed the effect of school practices regarding the provision of physical education (PE) on the physical fitness of children and youth.

Methods:

Using an untapped sample of approximately 5000 5th and 7th graders from 93 schools in Georgia in 2006, individual-level and merged school-level data on physical education were analyzed. Multivariate regression analyses were conducted to estimate the potential influence of the school environment on measured health outcomes. Controls were included for grade, gender, race/ethnicity, urbanicity, and county of residence.

Results:

Variables measuring 8 school-level practices pertaining to physical education were found to have significant effects on cardiovascular fitness as measured by the FitnessGram, with signs in the expected direction. These variables, combined with demographic variables, explained 29.73% of the variation in the Progressive Aerobic Cardiovascular Endurance Run but only 4.53% of the variation in the body mass index.

Conclusions:

School-level variables pertaining to PE practices were collectively strong predictors of physical fitness, particularly cardiovascular fitness. Schools that adopt these policies will likely encourage favorable physical activity habits that may last into adulthood. Future research should examine the causal relationships among physical education practices, physical activity, and health outcomes.

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Zhang Ying, Liu Dong Ning and Liu Xin

Background:

Seldom studies are about the relationship between built environment and physical activity, weight, and health outcome in meso- and microscales.

Methods:

1100 residents aged 46 to 80 were recruited from 80 neighborhoods of 13 selected communities of Shanghai, China. An analysis of the relationship between dependent variables (physical activity, Body Mass Index [BMI], overweight/obesity, weight, and health outcomes) and independent variables (involved a geographic-information-system-derived measure of built environment) was conducted with hierarchical linear models.

Results:

Street connectivity was positively associated with physical activity (P < .01). River proximity was inversely related with overweight/obesity (P = .0220). Parkland and square proximity have a significant relationship with physical activity (P = .0270, .0010), BMI (P = .0260, .0130), and overweight/obesity (P = .0020, .0470). Land-use mix was positively associated with physical activity (P < .01) and inversely associated with BMI (P = .0240) and overweight/obesity (P = .0440). Green and open spaces were positively related with BMI (P < .01) and health status (P < .01). For residential style, residents living in a village were more likely to have a lower BMI and overweight/obesity than those living in an urban old or newer residential building. The direct effect of square proximity is much stronger than the indirect effect on BMI through physical activity.

Conclusions:

The findings can help planners build more pedestrian-friendly communities. They are also useful for creating interventions that are sensitive to possible environmental barriers to physical activity in older adults.

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Barry Braun

The concept that participation in exercise/physical activity reduces the risk for a host of chronic diseases is undisputed. Along with adaptations to habitual activity, each bout of exercise induces beneficial changes that last for a finite period of time, requiring subsequent exercise bouts to sustain the benefits. In this respect, exercise/physical activity is similar to other “medications” and the idea of “Exercise as Medicine” is becoming embedded in the popular lexicon. Like other medications, exercise has an optimal dose and frequency of application specific to each health outcome, as well as interactions with food and other medications. Using the prevention of type-2 diabetes as an exemplar, the application of exercise/physical activity as a medication for metabolic “rehabilitation” is considered in these terms. Some recommendations that are specific to diabetes prevention emerge, showing the process by which exercise can be prescribed to achieve health goals tailored to individual disease prevention outcomes.

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Barbara E. Ainsworth and Steven P. Hooker

The health-enhancing benefits of regular physical activity have been theorized for thousands of years. Within the past 25 years, public health agencies, health-related organizations, and health-focused foundations have recognized regular physical activity as a major factor in preventing premature morbidity and mortality. Colleges and universities have experienced a paradigm shift in applying public health strategies to prepare graduates in understanding how to reduce the impact of sedentary lifestyles on health outcomes. For nearly 20 years, some kinesiology departments have expanded from traditional curricula to new courses and degrees in promoting physical activity in the community, the application of epidemiology concepts to physical activity, and the study of policy and environmental approaches to promoting physical activity. Given the high prevalence of physical activity insufficient to prevent premature morbidity and mortality, continuing educational efforts are needed to assure kinesiology students have the skills and information needed to promote physical activity in communities to people of all ages and abilities.

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Katie E. Cherry, Jennifer Silva Brown, Sangkyu Kim and S. Michal Jazwinski

Social behaviors are associated with health outcomes in later life. The authors examined relationships among social and physical activities and health in a lifespan sample of adults (N = 771) drawn from the Louisiana Healthy Aging Study (LHAS). Four age groups were compared: younger (21–44 years), middle-aged (45–64 years), older (65–84 years), and oldest-old adults (85–101 years). Linear regression analyses indicated that physical activity, hours spent outside of the house, and social support were significantly associated with selfreported health, after controlling for sociodemographic factors. Number of clubs was significantly associated with objective health status, after controlling for sociodemographic factors. These data indicate that social and physical activities remain important determinants of self-perceived health into very late adulthood. Implications of these data for current views on successful aging are discussed.

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Meghan Schreck, Robert Althoff, Meike Bartels, Eco de Geus, Jeremy Sibold, Christine Giummo, David Rubin and James Hudziak

Few studies have explored the relation between withdrawn behavior (WB) and exercise and screen time. The current study used exploratory factor analysis to examine the factor structure of leisure-time exercise behavior (LTEB) and screentime sedentary behavior (STSB) in a clinical sample of youth. Structural equation modeling was employed to investigate the relations between WB and LTEB and STSB, conditional on gender. WB was assessed using the Child Behavior Checklist, and LTEB and STSB were measured using the Vermont Health Behavior Questionnaire. LTEB and STSB emerged as two separate factors. Gender moderated the structure of STSB only. For boys and girls, WB was inversely related to LTEB but not significantly related to STSB. LTEB and STSB are best represented as distinct, uncorrelated constructs. In addition, withdrawn youth may be at risk for poor health outcomes due to lower rates of LTEB. Mental health clinicians, sports psychologists, and related providers may be uniquely qualified to enhance motivation for sports participation in withdrawn youth.

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Mindy Millard-Stafford, Jeffrey S. Becasen, Michael W. Beets, Allison J. Nihiser, Sarah M. Lee and Janet E. Fulton

A systematic review of literature was conducted to examine the association between changes in health-related fitness (e.g., aerobic capacity and muscular strength/endurance) and chronic disease risk factors in overweight and/or obese youth. Studies published from 2000–2010 were included if the physical activity intervention was a randomized controlled trial and reported changes in fitness and health outcomes by direction and significance (p < .05) of the effect. Aerobic capacity improved in 91% and muscular fitness improved in 82% of measures reported. Nearly all studies (32 of 33) reported improvement in at least one fitness test. Changes in outcomes related to adiposity, cardiovascular, musculoskeletal, metabolic, and mental/emotional health improved in 60%, 32%, 53%, 41%, and 33% of comparisons studied, respectively. In conclusion, overweight and obese youth can improve physical fitness across a variety of test measures. When fitness improves, beneficial health effects are observed in some, but not all chronic disease risk factors.