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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(9), 1901; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15091901

Does Physical Fitness Affect Academic Achievement among Japanese Adolescents? A Hybrid Approach for Decomposing Within-Person and Between-Persons Effects

1
Graduate School of Health Sciences, University of the Ryukyus, 207 Uehara, Nishihara, Okinawa 903-0215, Japan
2
Faculty of Medicine, University of the Ryukyus, 207 Uehara, Nishihara, Okinawa 903-0215, Japan
3
Faculty of Education, University of the Ryukyus, 1 Senbaru, Nishihara, Okinawa 903-0213, Japan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 11 July 2018 / Revised: 24 August 2018 / Accepted: 30 August 2018 / Published: 1 September 2018
(This article belongs to the Collection Physical Activity and Public Health)
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Abstract

Positive association between physical fitness and academic achievement in adolescents has been suggested yet the causal effect of physical fitness on academic achievement remains unclear. This study examined if longitudinal changes in physical fitness were associated with changes in academic achievement among junior high school students. Analyses were based on a two-year with three time-point data of 567 students (aged 12–13 years old at the baseline-point; 303 boys) who entered in five Japanese junior high schools in 2015. Academic achievement was evaluated using the student’s overall grade point average. Comprehensive physical fitness score was summed up from eight fitness tests: 50-m sprint, standing broad jump, repeated side-steps, sit and reach, sit-ups, hand-grip strength, handball throw, and 20-m shuttle run or endurance run. The hybrid regression model was applied to examine the impact of change in physical fitness on change in academic achievement using multiple imputation to account for non-response at follow-up. The changes in fitness score within-person and the differences in average of fitness score of three-time points between-person were associated with change in overall grade point average for boys. No significant association between fitness score and overall grade point average was observed in girls. Opportunities for increased physical fitness may be important to support academic achievement, particularly in junior high school boys. View Full-Text
Keywords: academic performance; sex characteristics; socio-economic status; Japan; longitudinal study academic performance; sex characteristics; socio-economic status; Japan; longitudinal study
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Kyan, A.; Takakura, M.; Miyagi, M. Does Physical Fitness Affect Academic Achievement among Japanese Adolescents? A Hybrid Approach for Decomposing Within-Person and Between-Persons Effects. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15, 1901.

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