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Childhood motor skill proficiency as a predictor of adolescent physical activity

journal contribution
posted on 01.03.2009, 00:00 authored by Lisa BarnettLisa Barnett, E Van Beurden, P Morgan, L Brooks, J Beard
Purpose
Cross-sectional evidence has demonstrated the importance of motor skill proficiency to physical activity participation, but it is unknown whether skill proficiency predicts subsequent physical activity.

Methods
In 2000, children's proficiency in object control (kick, catch, throw) and locomotor (hop, side gallop, vertical jump) skills were assessed in a school intervention. In 2006/07, the physical activity of former participants was assessed using the Australian Physical Activity Recall Questionnaire. Linear regressions examined relationships between the reported time adolescents spent participating in moderate-to-vigorous or organized physical activity and their childhood skill proficiency, controlling for gender and school grade. A logistic regression examined the probability of participating in vigorous activity.

Results
Of 481 original participants located, 297 (62%) consented and 276 (57%) were surveyed. All were in secondary school with females comprising 52% (144). Adolescent time in moderate-to-vigorous and organized activity was positively associated with childhood object control proficiency. Respective models accounted for 12.7% (p = .001), and 18.2% of the variation (p = .003). Object control proficient children became adolescents with a 10% to 20% higher chance of vigorous activity participation.

Conclusions
Object control proficient children were more likely to become active adolescents. Motor skill development should be a key strategy in childhood interventions aiming to promote long-term physical activity.

History

Journal

Journal of adolescent health

Volume

44

Issue

3

Pagination

252 - 259

Publisher

Elsevier

Location

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

ISSN

1054-139X

eISSN

1879-1972

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2009, Elsevier