Regular active play in children reduces the risk of pediatric obesity and diabetes and improves symptoms of depression and stress 1 , 2 ; yet about 80% of children and adolescents living in the United States do not engage in the recommended level of moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity
Robin C. Puett, Dina Huang, Jessica Montresor-Lopez, Rashawn Ray and Jennifer D. Roberts
Christina Duff, Johann Issartel, Wesley O’ Brien and Sarahjane Belton
childhood most often takes the form of physically active play, or active play ( Truelove, Vanderloo, & Tucker, 2017 ). Active play has been defined in various ways, including play that is distinguished by the characteristics of a playful context combined with a dimension of physical vigor ( Pellegrini
Stephanie Truelove, Leigh M. Vanderloo and Patricia Tucker
Many young children are not meeting the Canadian physical activity guidelines. In an effort to change this, the term active play has been used to promote increased physical activity levels. Among young children, physical activity is typically achieved in the form of active play behavior. The current study aimed to review and synthesize the literature to identify key concepts used to define and describe active play among young children. A secondary objective was to explore the various methods adopted for measuring active play.
A systematic review was conducted by searching seven online databases for English-language, original research or reports, and were eligible for inclusion if they defined or measured active play among young children (ie, 2 to 6 years).
Nine studies provided a definition or description of active play, six measured active play, and 13 included both outcomes. While variability in active play definitions did exist, common themes included: increased energy exerted, rough and tumble, gross motor movement, unstructured, freely chosen, and fun. Alternatively, many researchers described active play as physical activity (n = 13) and the majority of studies used a questionnaire (n = 16) to assess active play among young children.
Much variability in the types of active play, methods of assessing active play, and locations where active play can transpire were noted in this review. As such, an accepted and consistent definition is necessary, which we provide herein.
Bradley M. Appelhans and Hong Li
This study tested associations of organized sports participation and unstructured active play with overall moderate and vigorous physical activity (MVPA) in low-income children and examined factors associated with participation frequency.
Research staff visited 88 low-income Chicago households with children ages 6–13 years. MVPA was assessed through 7-day accelerometry. Researchers documented the home availability of physical activity equipment. Caregivers reported on child participation in organized sports and unstructured active play, family support for physical activity, perceived neighborhood safety, and access to neighborhood physical activity venues.
Despite similar participation in organized sports and unstructured active play, boys accumulated more MVPA than girls. MVPA was predicted by an interaction between gender and unstructured active play. Boys accumulated 23–45 additional minutes of weekday MVPA and 53–62 additional minutes of weekend MVPA through unstructured active play, with no such associations in girls. Higher reported neighborhood safety and family support for physical activity were associated with engagement in unstructured active play for both genders, and with participation in organized sports for girls.
Physical activity interventions for low-income, urban children should emphasize unstructured active play, particularly in boys. Fostering family support for physical activity and safe play environments may be critical intervention components.
Temitope Erinosho, Derek Hales, Amber Vaughn, Stephanie Mazzucca and Dianne S. Ward
This study assessed physical activity and screen time policies in child-care centers and their associations with physical activity and screen time practices and preschool children’s (3–5 years old) physical activity.
Data were from 50 child-care centers in North Carolina. Center directors reported on the presence/absence of written policies. Trained research assistants observed physical activity and screen time practices in at least 1 preschool classroom across 3 to 4 days. Children (N = 544) wore accelerometers to provide an objective measure of physical activity.
Physical activity and screen time policies varied across centers. Observational data showed 82.7 min/d of active play opportunities were provided to children. Screen time provided did not exceed 30 min/d/child at 98% of centers. Accelerometer data showed children spent 38 min/d in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity and 206 min/d in sedentary activity. Policies about staff supervision of media use were negatively associated with screen time (P < .05). Contrary to expectation, policies about physical activity were associated with less time in physical activity.
Clear strategies are needed for translating physical activity policies to practice. Further research is needed to evaluate the quality of physical activity policies, their impact on practice, and ease of operationalization.
Danae Dinkel, Dipti Dev, Yage Guo, Emily Hulse, Zainab Rida, Ami Sedani and Brian Coyle
–related items. The physical activity portion of the training focused on describing the importance of providing active play opportunities, specific components of the environment that help to encourage activity (best practices), the role of child care staff in helping to develop active lifestyles, and identifying
Isaac Estevan, Javier Molina-García, Gavin Abbott, Steve J. Bowe, Isabel Castillo and Lisa M. Barnett
competence according to gender, as past studies have reported gender differences in perception. It is hypothesized that the Spanish version of the PMSC will fit a three-factor model (i.e., object control, locomotor and active play) and that boys will score higher than girls in perceived motor competence
Salomé Aubert, Julien Aucouturier, Jeremy Vanhelst, Alicia Fillon, Pauline Genin, Caroline Ganière, Corinne Praznoczy, Benjamin Larras, Julien Schipman, Martine Duclos and David Thivel
, school implications, community and built environment, government strategies and investments, and active play (grades detailed in Table 1 ). This 2016 Report Card concluded by emphasizing the need to implement national physical activity promotion programs and the need for larger scale studies to fill
Taru Manyanga, Joel D. Barnes, Chalchisa Abdeta, Ade F. Adeniyi, Jasmin Bhawra, Catherine E. Draper, Tarun R. Katapally, Asaduzzaman Khan, Estelle Lambert, Daga Makaza, Vida K. Nyawornota, Reginald Ocansey, Narayan Subedi, Riaz Uddin, Dawn Tladi and Mark S. Tremblay
stakeholders. These data and information were aggregated and consolidated into report cards following a harmonized process. 23 , 24 , 26 Ten core indicators for the Global Matrix 3.0 (overall physical activity, organized sport and physical activity, active play, active transportation, sedentary behaviors
Monique Potvin Kent and Clive Velkers
decision that was made during the content analysis was the advertisement’s portrayed level of physical activity. A product was classified as promoting active play when the product could not be properly used without being physically active (ie, running, moving arms, etc). If this criterion was not met, then