also seen within the active transportation of children to school? To date, only 2 national studies looking at active transportation to school (ATS) behaviors among children have been able to compare the Southeast US to other regions. The first study, conducted in 2007, using data from the Youth Media
Eugene C. Fitzhugh, Jerry Everett, and Linda Daugherty
Brendon P. Hyndman, Amanda C. Benson, Shahid Ullah, Caroline F. Finch, and Amanda Telford
Enjoyment and play during school lunchtime are correlated with children’s physical activity. Despite this, there is an absence of studies reporting children’s enjoyment of play during school lunchtime breaks. The purpose of this study was to examine the intraday and interday reliability of children’s enjoyment of school lunchtime play.
Surveys used to assess children’s enjoyment of lunchtime play were distributed to and completed by 197 children (112 males, 85 females), aged 8–12 years attending an elementary school in Victoria, Australia. Children completed the surveys during class before lunch (expected enjoyment) and after lunch (actual enjoyment) for 5 days. The intra- and interday enjoyment of school lunchtime play reliability were determined using a weighted kappa.
Intraday kappa values ranged from fair (0.31) to substantial (0.75) within each of the 5 days (median kappa = 0.41). In comparison, “expected” (0.09–0.40; median 0.30) and “actual” (0.05–0.46; median 0.28) interday enjoyment of lunchtime play displayed low reliability.
Children’s enjoyment of lunchtime play appears to be more consistent within days than across days. The findings suggest that assessment of children’s enjoyment of lunchtime play once on a single day would be representative of a particular day but not necessarily that particular school week.
Glen Nielsen, Anna Bugge, Bianca Hermansen, Jesper Svensson, and Lars Bo Andersen
This study investigates the influence of school playground facilities on children’s daily physical activity.
Participants were 594 school children measured at preschool (age 6 to 7 years) and 3 years later in third grade (518 children age 9 to 10 years) from 18 schools in 2 suburban municipalities in Denmark. Physical activity data were obtained using accelerometers. These were related to the number of permanent play facilities in school grounds and the school playground area (m2).
The number of play facilities in the school grounds was positively associated with all measures of children’s activity. In preschool every 10 additional play facilities the children had access to was associated with an increase in the average accelerometer counts of 14% (r = .273, P < .001) in school time and 6.9% (r = .195, P < .001) overall. For the children in third grade, access to 10 additional play facilities was associated with an increase in school time activity level of 26% (r = .364, P < .001) and an increase in overall activity level of 9.4% (r = .211, P < .001). School playground area did not affect activity levels independently of the number of permanent play facilities.
Increasing the number of play facilities in primary school playgrounds may increase the level of children’s daily physical activity.
Nigel Harris, Isaac Warbrick, Denise Atkins, Alain Vandal, Lindsay Plank, and David R. Lubans
considered the cornerstone of school physical activity promotion efforts, but physical activity levels in class do not appear to meet recommendations, perhaps owing to the pressures of covering all curriculum areas in a limited amount of face-to-face time ( 7 – 9 ). High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is
Sarah G. Sanders, Elizabeth Yakes Jimenez, Natalie H. Cole, Alena Kuhlemeier, Grace L. McCauley, M. Lee Van Horn, and Alberta S. Kong
accelerometers are commonly used to measure activity amount and intensity in epidemiological studies. When measured by self-report, a large percentage of adolescents fail to meet activity recommendations: Only 27.1% high school students nationwide reported at least 60 minutes per day of moderate to vigorous
Sarah Morgan Hughey, Julian A. Reed, and Sarah B. King
recommendations for PA and fitness. 21 Schools reach a large proportion of youth and offer opportunities to increase youth PA and fitness through physical education (PE) classes, organized clubs, recess, and classroom activity breaks. 1 , 3 , 22 – 25 Specifically, PE courses can provide structured activities
Phillip Ward, Hal A. Lawson, Hans van der Mars, and Murray F. Mitchell
“the reinvention of governments” have been instrumental in the rise of alternative models for schools, universities, alternative educator preparation and certification programs, and new educational policies. Outcome-based accountability mechanisms and economic analyses (cost effectiveness and cost
Courtney Pilkerton and Thomas K. Bias
Public health researchers have demonstrated the potential for significant gains in physical activity through public policy. West Virginia passed House Bill 2816, known as the Healthy Lifestyles Act in 2005. This Act amended the code on the requirements of physical education and physical fitness in schools, creating minimum physical education requirements at each grade level. The goal of this policy evaluation was to identify if, 5 years postimplementation, students have increased physical education in schools.
Data from the 2003, 2005, 2007, 2009, and 2011 Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System surveys were used to examine the time trend of weekly PE participation in WV Schools.
There have been no significant changes in participation in physical education classes since before the implementation of the HLA.
Simple policy changes by themselves may not effectively create change in physical activity environments, as policy is moderated by strength of language, implementation, and enforcement. Further studies are needed to determine why the HLA has not been successful in increasing physical activity of youth and what changes to the standards and mandates, ways implementation in schools could be improved, and/or the enforcement of these standards are needed for such policies to be successful.
Peter Anthamatten, Lois Brink, Beverly Kingston, Eve Kutchman, Sarah Lampe, and Claudio Nigg
Careful research that elucidates how behavior relates to design in the context of elementary school grounds can serve to guide cost-efficient design with the goal of encouraging physical activity (PA). This work explores patterns in children’s PA behavior within playground spaces with the specific goal of guiding healthy playground design.
Data on children’s utilization and PA behavior in 6 playgrounds divided into 106 observation zones were collected in 2005 and 2006 at Denver elementary school playgrounds using the System for Observing Play and Leisure Activity in Youth. Analyses of variance and t tests determined whether there were differences in utilization and behavior patterns across observations zones and between genders.
This study provides evidence that children prefer to use certain types of playground zones and that they are more likely to practice moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) in some zones. The authors observed statistically significant differences between genders. Boys were more likely to engage in MVPA in zones without equipment, girls were more likely to use zones with equipment.
This work suggests that the inclusion or omission of specific playground features may have an impact on the way that children use the spaces.
Chelsee A. Shortt, Collin A. Webster, Richard J. Keegan, Cate A. Egan, and Ali S. Brian
). For example, Flemons ( 2013 ) argued “physical education ideology should ensure that learners leave school having made progress on their individual physical literacy journeys” (p. 193). Schools, particularly through quality physical education programming, can play a major role in the development of PL