The aim of the study was to examine the association of daily variations in rainfall and temperature with sedentary time (ST) and physical activity (PA) in European children.
Children were included from 5 countries (Belgium, Greece, Hungary, the Netherlands, Switzerland) as part of the ENERGY-project. We used cross-sectional data from 722 children aged 10–12 years (47% boys). ST and PA were measured by accelerometers for 6 consecutive days, including weekend days. Weather data were collected from online national weather reports. Multilevel regression models were used for data analyses.
Maximum temperature was positively associated with light PA (β = 3.1 min/day; 95% CI = 2.4–3.8), moderate-to-vigorous PA (β = 0.6 min/day; 95% CI = 0.4–0.8), and average PA [β = 4.1 counts per minute (cpm); 95% CI = 1.6–6.5, quadratic relationship]. Rainfall was inversely and quadratically associated with light PA (β = –1.3 min/day; 95% CI = –1.9 to –0.6), moderate-to-vigorous PA (β = –0.6 min/day; 95% CI = –0.8 to –0.3), and average PA (β = –1.6 cpm; 95% CI = –2.2 to –0.9). Maximum temperature was not significantly associated with ST (β = –0.2 min/day; 95% CI = –1.0 to 0.6), while rainfall was positively associated with ST (β = 0.9 min/day; 95% CI = 0.6–1.3).
The current study shows that temperature and rainfall are significantly associated with PA and ST in 10- to 12-year-old European children.