The aim of this study was to establish the correlates of PA in children who are physically active andmeeting the current physical activity guidelines for health. Despite the increasing recognition of thehealth benefits associated with regular physical activity (PA) many children do not meet the currentPA recommendations for health. By identifying the correlates of PA in the first year at school moreinformed interventions to encourage active behaviours for children could be achieved. Methods. A sample of 102 school children (55 boys; 47 girls) aged 4-5 years wore a sealed pedometer for 6 consecutive days to measure mean daily step counts and parents completed the Northern Ireland Young Hearts Study questionnaire to assess correlates. Results. Boys performed more steps per week day (14,331) than girls (12,631) (p≤.0.05), no significant differences were found at weekends. Of the sample, 34.9% of boys and 48% of girls met or exceeded the recommended number of steps per day required for health. Time spent outdoors was positively correlated with PA, while the amount of television viewing by parental report was negatively correlated. Discussion/Conclusions. Interventions aimed at increasing PA for children should consider gender as boys are more active than girls but more boys fail to meet the steps per day recommendations for health. Also reducing television viewing time and increasing time spent outdoors should be considered.
|Journal||Journal of Sport and Health Research|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Jan 2014|