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Matthew R. Nagy, Molly P. O’Sullivan, Shannon S. Block, Trevor R. Tooley, Leah E. Robinson, Natalie Colabianchi and Rebecca E. Hasson

. 9 The primary aim of this study was to compare the acute effects of sedentary screen-time breaks and intermittent physical activity, performed at varying intensities, on psychological mood and enjoyment in elementary school-age children. Our primary hypothesis was that 20 two-minute activity breaks

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Louise Foley, Harry Prapavessis, Ralph Maddison, Shauna Burke, Erin McGowan and Lisa Gillanders

Two studies were conducted to predict physical activity in school-aged children. Study 1 tested the utility of an integrated model in predicting physical activity (PA) intention and behavior—the theory of planned behavior (TPB) and self-efficacy theory. Six hundred and forty-five New Zealand children (aged 11–13 years) completed measures corresponding to the integrated model and a self-reported measure of PA one week later. Perceived behavioral control (PBC) and subjective norm were the two strongest predictors of intentions. Task efficacy and barrier efficacy were the two strongest predictors of PA. A second study (Study 2) was conducted to determine whether the self-efficacy measures could discriminate objectively measured PA levels. Sixty-seven Canadian children (aged 11–13 years) completed task and barrier self-efficacy measures. The following week, children classified as ‘high’ (n = 11) and ‘lower’ (n = 7) for both task and barrier efficacy wore an Actical® monitor for seven consecutive days to provide activity-related energy expenditure (AEE) data. Results showed that children with high efficacy expended significantly greater AEE than their lower efficacious counterparts. Findings from these two studies provide support for the use of self-efficacy interventions as a potentially useful means of increasing PA levels among school-aged children.

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Jason C. Immekus, Franklin Muntis and Daniela Terson de Paleville

and skills among elementary school-aged children. Further, we put particular emphasis on the demonstration of lasso for predictor variable selection in exercise science research. As an alternative to traditional ordinary least squares regression, lasso is a flexible approach to model selection when

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João Martins, Adilson Marques, Nuno Loureiro, Francisco Carreiro da Costa, José Diniz and Margarida Gaspar de Matos

: 24121247 doi:10.1249/MSS.0000000000000181 10.1249/MSS.0000000000000181 24121247 6. Inchley J , Currie D , Young T , et al . Growing Up Unequal: Gender and Socioeconomic Differences in Young People’s Health and Well-Being. Health Behaviour in School-Aged Children (HBSC) Study: International

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Jin Bo, Julia Barta, Hilary Ferencak, Sara Comstock, Vanessa Riley and Joni Krueger

The current study evaluated the developmental characteristics of printed and cursive letter writing in early school-age children. We predicted fewer age-related changes on spatial and temporal measures in cursive letter writing due to lower explicit timing demands compared with printed letter writing. Thirty children wrote the letters e and l in cursive and printed forms repetitively. For printed letters, significant age effects were seen in temporal consistency, whereas cursive letters showed age-related improvement in spatial consistency. Children tended to have higher consistency for printed handwriting than they did for cursive writing. Because of an overall advantage for printed handwriting, the explicit timing hypothesis was not fully supported. We argue that experiential factors influence the development of handwriting.

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Xiangli Gu, Mei Chang and Melinda A. Solmon

Purpose:

This study examined the association between physical activity (PA), physical fitness, and health-related quality of life (HRQOL) among school-aged children.

Methods:

Participants were 201 children (91 boys, 110 girls; Mage = 9.82) enrolled in one school in the southern US. Students’ PA (self-reported PA, pedometer-based PA) and physical fitness (cardiorespiratory fitness, muscular fitness, flexibility, and body composition) were assessed in the fall. The PedsQL4.0 (Varni et al., 2001) was used to assess participants’ HRQOL (physical and mental function) in the spring.

Results:

PA and four components of physical fitness were positively associated with physical and mental function. Path analyses suggested physical fitness mediated the relationship between self-reported PA and HRQOL (95% CI: [.53, 1.48]), as well as between pedometer-based PA and HRQOL (95% CI: [.54, 1.53]).

Discussion:

Results support the conclusion that enhancing children’s physical fitness can facilitate positive outcomes including improved health related quality of life.

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Suzanne Houwen, Esther Hartman, Laura Jonker and Chris Visscher

This study examines the psychometric properties of the Test of Gross Motor Development-2 (TGMD-2) in children with visual impairments (VI). Seventy-five children aged between 6 and 12 years with VI completed the TGMD-2 and the Movement Assessment Battery for Children (Movement ABC). The internal consistency of the TGMD-2 was found to be high (alpha = 0.71−0.72) and the interrater, intrarater, and test-retest reliability acceptable (ICCs ranging from 0.82 to 0.95). The results of the factor analysis supported internal test structure and significant age and sex effects were observed. Finally, the scores on the object control subtest of the TGMD-2 and the ball skills subtest of the Movement ABC correlated moderately to high (r = 0.45 to r = 0.80). Based on the current results, it is concluded that the TGMD-2 is an appropriate tool to assess the gross motor skills of primary-school-age children with VI.

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Raquel Burrows, Paulina Correa-Burrows, Yasna Orellana, Atilio Almagiá, Pablo Lizana and Daniza Ivanovic

Background:

This study was carried out to examine the association between systematic physical activity and academic performance in school kids after controlling for potential sociodemographic and educational confounders.

Methods:

In a random sample of 1271 students from urban Santiago, attending 5th and 9th grade, who took the 2009 System for the Assessment of Educational Quality (SIMCE) tests, we measured physical activity habits, anthropometric characteristics, and socioeconomic status. Academic performance was measured by the standardized SIMCE tests. Logistic regressions assessed the relationship between the allocation of time to weekly scheduled exercise, potential confounding factors, and individual academic performance.

Results:

About 80% of students reported less than 2 hours of weekly scheduled exercise, while 10.6% and 10.2% reported 2 to 4 hours/week and more than 4 hours/week, respectively. Devoting more than 4 hours/week to scheduled exercise significantly increased (P < .01) the odds of having SIMCE composite z-scores ≥ 50th percentile (OR: 2.3, 95% CI: 1.4 to 3.6) and ≥ 75th percentile (OR: 2.1, 95% CI: 1.3–3.3).

Conclusions:

Better academic performance was associated with a higher allocation of time to scheduled exercise in school-age children.

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Ivan Vrbik, Goran Sporiš, Lovro Štefan, Dejan Madić, Nebojša Trajković, Irena Valantine and Zoran Milanović

Purpose:

The number of familiarization sessions in fitness assessments seems to be critical and inconsistent. Therefore, the primary aim of this research was to determine the number of familiarization attempts that stabilize the results in particular physical fitness tests. The secondary aim was to establish the test reliability through familiarization sessions.

Methods:

Thirty-nine primary school children participated in this research (age: 10.8 years, body mass: 40.6 ± 8.9 kg, and body height: 145.3 ± 7.2 cm). During six sessions, with one session every third day, participants performed the following tests to assess explosive strength (vertical jump and standing long jump), coordination (polygon backward and polygon with turn) and flexibility (toe touch).

Results:

The results of repeated analysis of variance (ANOVA) showed that there were significant increases (p < .05) in the polygon backward and polygon with turn performances from the first to third familiarization session. The standard error of measurement decreased as sessions progressed, indicating little within subject variation between the coordination test results following a familiarization period. Statistically significant differences were identified in the vertical jump test from the fourth test session compared with the first session. On the other hand, statistically significant differences for the standing long jump test were only found in the final session compared with the initial session. In the toe touch test, there were no significant increases from the first to the final familiarization session. All tests showed high a reliability coefficients, ranging from 0.979 to 0.991.

Conclusion:

Polygon backward and polygon with turn performance may be a practical, reliable method to assess coordination in primary school-aged children. However, completion of at least 3 practice sessions is suggested for participants to obtain a stable score. In addition, both jump tests are feasible for assessing skill-related fitness in young children, although the scientific reliability of the two tests should be questioned and the tests should be tailored to fit the age group of the children.

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Megan MacDonald, Catherine Lord and Dale A. Ulrich

Motor skill deficits are present and persist in school-aged children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD; Staples & Reid, 2010). Yet the focus of intervention is on core impairments, which are part of the diagnostic criteria for ASD, deficits in social communication skills. The purpose of this study is to determine whether the functional motor skills, of 6- to 15-year-old children with high-functioning ASD, predict success in standardized social communicative skills. It is hypothesized that children with better motor skills will have better social communicative skills. A total of 35 children with ASD between the ages of 6–15 years participated in this study. The univariate GLM (general linear model) tested the relationship of motor skills on social communicative skills holding constant age, IQ, ethnicity, gender, and clinical ASD diagnosis. Object-control motor skills significantly predicted calibrated ASD severity (p < .05). Children with weaker motor skills have greater social communicative skill deficits. How this relationship exists behaviorally, needs to be explored further.