An observational assessment of physical activity levels and social behaviour during elementary school recess

Roberts, Simon J., Fairclough, Stuart J., Ridgers, Nicola D. and Porteous, Conor 2013, An observational assessment of physical activity levels and social behaviour during elementary school recess, Health education journal, vol. 72, no. 3, pp. 254-262, doi: 10.1177/0017896912439126.

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Title An observational assessment of physical activity levels and social behaviour during elementary school recess
Author(s) Roberts, Simon J.
Fairclough, Stuart J.
Ridgers, Nicola D.ORCID iD for Ridgers, Nicola D.
Porteous, Conor
Journal name Health education journal
Volume number 72
Issue number 3
Start page 254
End page 262
Total pages 9
Publisher Sage Publications
Place of publication London, England
Publication date 2013-05
ISSN 0017-8969
Keyword(s) physical activity
school children
The System for Observing Children’s Activity and Relationships during Play (SOCARP)
systematic observation
Summary Objective: The purpose of the present study was to assess children’s physical activity, social play behaviour, activity type and social interactions during elementary school recess using a pre-validated systematic observation system.

Design: Cross-sectional.

Setting: Two elementary schools located in Merseyside, England.

Method: Fifty-six elementary school children (27 boys, 29 girls) were systematically observed during recess over a three-month period using a standardized physical activity observation instrument.

Results: The results revealed the boys were engaged in significantly higher levels of physical activity during recess than girls. The boys were also involved in more sport-specific activities and participated in larger group sizes. Positive associations between physical activity and availability of equipment during recess were also reported.

Conclusion: This study has confirmed recess as a valuable opportunity for elementary school children to increase their levels of physical activity. However, further studies with larger sample sizes need to identify and explore the relationship between physical activity (PA) and availability of equipment.
Language eng
DOI 10.1177/0017896912439126
Field of Research 110699 Human Movement and Sports Science not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 920401 Behaviour and Health
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition
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