Participation in physical activity (PA) is fundamental to children’s future health. Studies examining the temporal pattern of PA between weekdays and weekends in British preschool children are lacking. Therefore, the aim of this study was to compare PA levels between week and weekend days for UK preschool children, using objective measurements. One hundred and eighty-five preschool children (99 boys, 86 girls, aged 4–5 years), from central England wore a triaxial accelerometer (GENEActiv) for 4 days to determine PA. The time (min) and percentage (%) of time spent in light, moderate and vigorous PA (MVPA) was determined using specific cut-points for counts per minute related to 3–5 year olds. Of the sample, none of the children met the UK recommended 180 min or more of PA per day. A significant difference (P
< 0.05) was observed between the amount of time that preschool children spent in sedentary behaviours on weekdays (91.9%) compared to weekend days (96.9%). During weekdays and weekend days, 6.3% and 2.0% of time was spent in MVPA, respectively. Therefore, a substantial proportion of British preschool children’s day is spent in sedentary behaviours, with less MVPA accrued during the weekend. Regular engagement during the weekdays provides opportunities to accrue PA, which may not be present on weekend days.
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