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The provision of compulsory school physical activity : associations with physical activity, fitness and overweight in childhood and twenty years later

Cleland, Verity, Dwyer, Terence, Blizzard, Leigh and Venn, Alison 2008, The provision of compulsory school physical activity : associations with physical activity, fitness and overweight in childhood and twenty years later, International journal of behvioral nutrition and physical activity, vol. 5, no. 14, pp. 1-9.

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Title The provision of compulsory school physical activity : associations with physical activity, fitness and overweight in childhood and twenty years later
Author(s) Cleland, Verity
Dwyer, Terence
Blizzard, Leigh
Venn, Alison
Journal name International journal of behvioral nutrition and physical activity
Volume number 5
Issue number 14
Start page 1
End page 9
Publisher BioMed Central
Place of publication London, Eng.
Publication date 2008-02-29
ISSN 1479-5868
Summary Background
To determine whether the provision of higher levels of compulsory school physical activity is associated with higher physical activity and fitness levels and less overweight in childhood and 20 years later.

Methods
As part of the 1985 Australian Schools Health and Fitness Survey, 109 schools reported how much compulsory physical education (PE) and school sport they provided and were classified as low (<110 and <150 minutes/week for primary and secondary schools, respectively), medium (110–149 and 150–189 minutes/week for primary and secondary schools, respectively) or high (≥150 and ≥190 minutes/week for primary and secondary schools, respectively) compulsory physical activity schools by tertile cutpoints. 6,412 children reported frequency and duration of school (PE and sport) and non-school (commuting and non-organised exercise) physical activity and had height and weight measured; overweight was defined using body mass index (BMI) (m/kg2) cutpoints. 9, 12 and 15 year-olds (n = 2,595) completed a cycle ergometer fitness test (physical working capacity at heart rate 170, PWC170). At follow-up in 2004–5, 2,346 participants kept a pedometer record, completed the International Physical Activity Questionnaire and/or a PWC170 fitness test; and had height and weight measured (overweight = BMI≥25 m/kg2).

Results
At baseline and follow-up, median total physical activity, fitness and BMI were similar in participants who attended low, medium and high physical activity schools, and those attending high physical activity schools reported only modestly higher school physical activity. There was no difference in the prevalence of high total physical activity and fitness levels in childhood or adulthood across compulsory school physical activity categories. The prevalence of overweight in childhood and adulthood was similar across low, medium and high compulsory physical activity schools.

Conclusion
The amount of compulsory physical activity reported by schools was not associated with total physical activity, fitness or overweight in childhood or in adulthood. Policies promoting amounts of compulsory school physical activity in this range may not be sufficient to increase physical activity and fitness or reduce the prevalence of obesity in children.
Notes This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the attached BioMed Central License. See license for details. Reproduced with kind permission of the copyright owner.
Language eng
Field of Research 111706 Epidemiology
Socio Economic Objective 920205 Health Education and Promotion
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
HERDC collection year 2008
Copyright notice ©2008, Cleland et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30017847

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences
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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.