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Christine Voss and Gavin R. H. Sandercock

Background:

Parental behavior is an important correlate of child health. The aim of this study was to investigate the association between perceived parental physical activity (PA) and schoolchildren’s aerobic fitness.

Methods:

English schoolchildren’s (n = 4029, 54% boys, 10.0−15.9 yrs) fitness was assessed by 20 m shuttle run test and categorized using criterion-referenced standards. Parental PA was reported by the child.

Results:

Boys and girls were more likely to be fit (OR 1.4, 95% CI 1.1−1.8; OR 1.5, 95% CI 1.1−2.0; respectively) if at least 1 parent was perceived as active compared with when neither parents were. Girls were even more likely to be fit (OR 1.8, 95% CI 1.2−2.8) if both parents were active. Associations between parental PA and child fitness were generally stronger when parent and child were of the same gender, although girls with active fathers were more likely (OR 2.5, 95% CI 1.7−3.7) to be fit compared with inactive fathers.

Conclusion:

Schoolchildren perceiving at least 1 parent as active are more likely to meet health-related fitness standards. Underlying mechanisms remain elusive, but same-gender associations suggest that social rather than genetic factors are of greater importance. Targeting parental PA or at least perceptions of parental PA should be given consideration in interventions aiming to improve child health.

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Ana C. Seabra, José Maia, André F. Seabra, Greg Welk, Robert Brustad and António M. Fonseca

Background:

The Youth Physical Activity Promotion (YPAP) model provides an integrated approach to understanding the predisposing, enabling, and reinforcing factors influencing physical activity (PA) behavior. The purpose of this study was to evaluate an adapted version of the YPAP model for explaining PA among Portuguese schoolchildren.

Methods:

A random cross-sectional sample of 683 children (8–10 years of age) attending elementary public schools in the north of Portugal completed a detailed survey assessing attraction to PA, perceived physical competence, parental influences and leisure time PA. Structural equation modeling techniques were conducted (EQS6.1).

Results:

Attraction to PA was directly associated with children’s PA participation (β = 0.271, P < .05). Perceived physical competence imposed an indirect effect on children’s PA through children’s attraction to PA (β = 0.253, P < .05). Parental influence had an indirect effect on children’s PA through perceived physical competence and attraction to PA (β = 0.318 and 0.662, respectively, P < .05). Perceived physical competence and parental influence were not directly associated with children’s PA (β = 0.069 and 0.180, respectively, P > .05).

Conclusions:

The adapted version of YPAP model was useful in explaining PA participation in elementary Portuguese schoolchildren. Intervention programs intended to enhance attraction to PA, perceived physical competence and favorable parental influence should be developed to promote children’s PA participation.

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Gerson Luis de Moraes Ferrari, Victor Matsudo, Tiago V. Barreira, Catrine Tudor-Locke, Peter T. Katzmarzyk and Mauro Fisberg

Background:

Few studies have used ecological models to study multiple levels of association with objectively measured moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) in young children from middle-income countries. The purpose of this study was to examine potential correlates of objectively measured MVPA in Brazilian children.

Methods:

The sample consisted of 328 children. An Actigraph GT3X+ accelerometer was used to monitor MVPA over 7 days. Body mass index and body fat percentage were measured using a bioelectrical impedance scale. Questionnaires completed by the children, their parents, and school personnel queried individual, family and home, and school-level environmental correlates.

Results:

Children averaged 59.3 min/d in MVPA (44.5% met MVPA guidelines), and 51.8% were overweight/obese. For boys and girls combined, significant correlates (P < .05) of MVPA were waist circumference (β = –.007), travel mode to school (β = .140), maternal employment status (β = –.119) and TV in bedroom (β –.107). In boys, significant correlates of MVPA were waist circumference (β = –.011), travel mode to school (β = .133), and maternal employment status (β = –.195). In girls, the only significant correlate of MVPA was travel mode to school (β = .143).

Conclusions:

Several factors were identified as correlates of MVPA in Brazilian children; however, only travel mode to school was common for both boys and girls.

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Kaori Ishii, Ai Shibata, Minoru Adachi, Yoshiyuki Mano and Koichiro Oka

Background:

Sedentary behaviors (SB) are associated with health indicators; however, there are currently very few studies that have examined these associations, especially in conjunction with psychological factors, in children. The current study examined the independent relationship between objectively assessed SB, and indicators of obesity and psychological well-being, among Japanese children.

Methods:

A total of 967 elementary-school children completed a cross-sectional survey. SB was measured with accelerometers for 7 consecutive days. Psychological well-being data (eg, anxiety and behavior problems) were collected via a self-report questionnaire. To determine the relationship of SB with degree of obesity and psychological well-being, linear regression analyses were conducted to relate the indicators of obesity and psychological well-being on SB, adjusted by gender, grade, percentage of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity per day, duration spent wearing the accelerometer, and degree of obesity.

Results:

SB was significantly related to behavioral/emotional problems (β = .280, P = .010, R 2 = .015). There was a statistically significant relationship between SB and anxiety (β = .206, P = .059, R 2 = .007). No significant association with degree of obesity was found.

Conclusions:

Excess SB relates higher levels of behavioral/emotional problems and anxiety. These results can inspire the development of interventions that promote well-being and enhance psychological health, by focusing on SB in Japanese children.

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Alison L. Innerd and Liane B. Azevedo

Background:

The aim of this study is to establish the energy expenditure (EE) of a range of child-relevant activities and to compare different methods of estimating activity MET.

Methods:

27 children (17 boys) aged 9 to 11 years participated. Participants were randomly assigned to 1 of 2 routines of 6 activities ranging from sedentary to vigorous intensity. Indirect calorimetry was used to estimate resting and physical activity EE. Activity metabolic equivalent (MET) was determined using individual resting metabolic rate (RMR), the Harrell-MET and the Schofield equation.

Results:

Activity EE ranges from 123.7± 35.7 J/min/Kg (playing cards) to 823.1 ± 177.8 J/min/kg (basketball). Individual RMR, the Harrell-MET and the Schofield equation MET prediction were relatively similar at light and moderate but not at vigorous intensity. Schofield equation provided a better comparison with the Compendium of Energy Expenditure for Youth.

Conclusion:

This information might be advantageous to support the development of a new Compendium of Energy Expenditure for Youth.

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Benjamin C. Guinhouya, Mohamed Lemdani, Géoffroy K. Apété, Alain Durocher, Christian Vilhelm and Hervé Hubert

Background:

This study was designed to model the relationship between an ActiGraph-based “in-school” physical activity (PA) and the daily one among children and to quantify how school can contribute to the daily PA recommendations.

Method:

Fifty boys and 43 girls (aged 8 to 11 years) wore ActiGraph for 2 schooldays of no structured PA. The daily moderate-to-vigorous PA (MVPAd) was regressed on the school time MVPA (MVPAs). Then, a ROC analysis was computed to define the required MVPAs.

Results:

Children spent 57% of their awaking time at school. School time PA opportunities (ie, recesses: ~18% of a child’s awaking time) accounted for >70% of the MVPAd among children. Then, MVPAd (Y) could be predicted from MVPAs (X) using the equation: Y = 2.06 X 0.88; R 2 = .889, P < .0001. Although, this model was sex-specifically determined, cross-validations showed valid estimates of MVPAd. Finally, with a sensitivity of 100% and a specificity of 90%, MVPAs, a 34 min.d−1 was required to prompt the daily recommendation.

Conclusions:

The current study shows the contribution of MVPA at school to recommended activity levels and suggests the value of activity performed during recesses. It also calls for encouraging both home- and community-based interventions, predominantly directed toward girls.

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Dartagnan P. Guedes, Jaime Miranda Neto, Vitor Pires Lopes and António José Silva

Background:

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.

Methods:

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.

Results:

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.

Conclusions:

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.

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Patricia Olaya-Contreras, Myriam Bastidas and Daniel Arvidsson

Aims:

The aim of this study is to investigate associations of screen-time and physical activity (PA) with self-efficacy for PA, intrinsic motivation to PA and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in Colombian schoolchildren from socioeconomically disadvantaged neighborhoods, and to compare these variables among children with normal-weight (NW), overweight (OW) and obesity (OB).

Methods:

In 678 schoolchildren (age 10–14 years) screen-time (TV, video games, computer) and number of days being physically active ≥ 60 minutes were self-reported. Multi-item scales were used to assess self-efficacy to PA and intrinsic motivation to PA. The KIDSCREEN-27 was used to assess HRQoL.

Results:

Screen-time was associated with HRQoL in the school/learning environment dimension. Number of days being physically active was associated with self-efficacy for PA, intrinsic motivation for PA and with HRQoL concerning physical well-being, autonomy/parent relation and social support/peers. Group differences were found for days being physically active (OW = 2.8 and OB = 2.7 vs. NW = 3.3) but not for screen-time (NW = 5.0, OW = 4.7 and OB = 5.7 hrs·d-1). OW and OB scored lower on intrinsic motivation to PA than NW (OW = 19.2 and OB = 17.9 versus NW = 20.1). All 3 groups differed in physical well-being scores (NW = 50.3, OW = 48.1, OB = 40.6, P < .001).

Conclusions:

Schoolchildren with overweight and obesity from socioeconomically disadvantaged neighborhoods need additional motivational support to perform health-enhancing PA to experience higher physical well-being.

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Nikos Ntoumanis, Anne-Marte Pensgaard, Chris Martin and Katie Pipe

The purpose of this study was to provide an in-depth account of amotivation in compulsory school physical education by examining its major causes, the way it is displayed, and how it can be tackled. From an initial participant pool of 390 British schoolchildren ages 14 to 15 years, 21 of them (15 girls and 6 boys) were selected to participate in semi-structured interviews. They were categorized as being amotivated based on their responses to a questionnaire measuring motivation in physical education. Three main perceived causes of amotivation were identified in the interviews: learned helplessness beliefs, low need satisfaction, and contextual factors. Amotivation was mainly displayed by nonattendance, low involvement in the class, and low intention to be physically active after leaving school. Students’ suggestions for reducing amotivation focused on the enhancement of positive affect, need satisfaction, and structural/organizational changes. The findings are discussed in conjunction with contemporary motivation theories and models of amotivation.

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Daniel P. Bailey, Louise A. Savory, Sarah J. Denton and Catherine J. Kerr

Background:

It is unclear whether cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) is independently linked to cardiometabolic risk in children. This study investigated a) the association between CRF level and presence of cardiometabolic risk disorders using health-related cut points, and b) whether these associations were mediated by abdominal adiposity in children.

Methods:

This was a cross-sectional design study. Anthropometry, biochemical parameters and CRF were assessed in 147 schoolchildren (75 girls) aged 10 to 14 years. CRF was determined using a maximal cycle ergometer test. Children were classified as ‘fit’ or ‘unfit’ according to published thresholds. Logistic regression was used to investigate the odds of having individual and clustered cardiometabolic risk factors according to CRF level and whether abdominal adiposity mediated these associations.

Results:

Children classified as unfit had increased odds of presenting individual and clustered cardiometabolic risk factors (P < .05), but these associations no longer remained after adjusting for abdominal adiposity (P > .05).

Conclusions:

This study suggests that the association between CRF and cardiometabolic risk is mediated by abdominal adiposity in 10- to 14-year-old children and that abdominal adiposity may be a more important determinant of adverse cardiometabolic health in this age group.