Special Issue "Promoting Health: Physical Activity and Well-Being in Children and Adolescents"

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Global Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 May 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Damián Iglesias Gallego
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Physical Education and Exercise Lab. Teacher Training College, University of Extremadura, Avd. de la Universidad S/N, 10003 Cáceres, Spain
Interests: physical education; exercise; sport; physical activity; applied psychology; well-being; health education
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Dr. Benito León del Barco
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Psychology, Teacher Training College, University of Extremadura, 10003 Cáceres, Spain
Interests: psychological development; education; physical activity; wellbeing; mental health
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

There is a growing interest in research into the determinants of health-related quality of life. Studies highlighting the importance of regular physical activity as a healthy practice and numerous investigations have shown that the practice of physical activity contributes positively to psychosocial wellbeing in the population. Physical education within the school context is presented as a suitable environment to promote physical activity and healthy lifestyles, and it is agreed that physical activity carried out at an early age helps to establish healthy living habits that can last a lifetime.

In this Special Issue we are inviting researchers from different academic disciplines (physical education, psychology, sociology, medicine, etc.) to address the study of physical activity as a central variable in achieving a healthier population from a multiple or bio-psychosocial point of view. We are looking for studies that analyze the subject within the school context through physical education lessons, in free time outside school, or indeed studies with adult and elderly populations. The proposal is open to cross-sectional, longitudinal, and intervention studies that apply quantitative, qualitative or mixed methodologies. Systematic reviews, meta-analyses and proposals for new measuring instruments are also welcomed.

Dr. Damián Iglesias-Gallego
Dr. Benito León del Barco
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2300 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Health promotion
  • Physical activity
  • Physical education
  • Sport
  • Wellbeing
  • Applied psychology
  • Medicine
  • Children
  • Adolescents
  • Adults
  • Elderly

Published Papers (21 papers)

Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:

Research

Jump to: Review

Open AccessArticle
Parents’ Perceptions on Barriers and Facilitators of Physical Activity among Schoolchildren: A Qualitative Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(6), 3086; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18063086 - 17 Mar 2021
Viewed by 537
Abstract
Given that physical activity (PA) plays an important role in early childhood, understanding the factors that affect the practice of PA at an early age could help develop effective strategies for overcoming barriers and increasing activity levels in this age group. A qualitative [...] Read more.
Given that physical activity (PA) plays an important role in early childhood, understanding the factors that affect the practice of PA at an early age could help develop effective strategies for overcoming barriers and increasing activity levels in this age group. A qualitative study was conducted based on grounded theory aimed at exploring the perceptions of mothers and fathers from Cuenca and Ciudad Real (Castilla La Mancha, Spain) regarding barriers and facilitators of physical activity of their children during the adiposity rebound period. Data were collected using focus groups involving 46 parents of children in the 3rd grade of pre-school and 1st grade of elementary school. During the analysis, the socio-ecological model and grounded theory were used. The barriers encountered were the preferences of children for sedentary activities (individual factors), academic tasks as a main priority of parents, the influence of older siblings and the unfavorable school environment (microsystem), the lack of family conciliation (mesosystem), and barriers related to the built environment or lack of facilities for physical activity (exosystem). Facilitators were the preferences for active games (individual factors), parental models including the co-participation of parents in activities, the influence of friends, living in large homes, the support provided by teachers and the school (microsystem), living in rural areas, having sufficient facilities, favorable weather conditions (exosystem), and the existence of free or subsidized activities (macro system). Programs aimed at promoting PA in early childhood should include strategies that address contextual factors and not only focus on individual factors related to the child. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Evidence-Based Overview of Accelerometer-Measured Physical Activity during School Recess: An Updated Systematic Review
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(2), 578; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18020578 - 12 Jan 2021
Viewed by 586
Abstract
Interest in analyzing physically active behaviors during school recesses has grown in recent years as the school environment has consolidated (recess, physical education classes, lunch-time, before and after school) as a crucial space to bring these levels towards those recommended through intervention programs [...] Read more.
Interest in analyzing physically active behaviors during school recesses has grown in recent years as the school environment has consolidated (recess, physical education classes, lunch-time, before and after school) as a crucial space to bring these levels towards those recommended through intervention programs and improvements in the school environment. Unfortunately, in most of these studies, children do not achieve the 60 min a day of moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) recommended by the World Health Organization. The aim of this systematic review is to analyze the cross-sectional, longitudinal, and intervention studies objectively measured with accelerometers that have emerged in recent years to determine the amount of MVPA of children at recess. This systematic review followed the PRISMA guidelines. The extraction process for the studies included in this systematic review yielded a total of 43 articles. The studies were classified according to the methodological nature of the research: cross-sectional (n = 34), longitudinal (n = 3) and quasi-experimental (n = 6). The results of the studies confirm that during the recess period younger children are physically more active than older ones and that in general, boys are more physically active than girls. In addition, the data show that the school contributes to more than 40% of the total MVPA. The intervention programs led to an increase in MVPA of up to 5%. Providing schools with equipment and facilities shows that intervention programs are beneficial for raising children’s levels of physical activity. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Effects of an 8-Week Cooperative Learning Intervention on Physical Education Students’ Task and Self-Approach Goals, and Emotional Intelligence
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(1), 61; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18010061 - 23 Dec 2020
Viewed by 921
Abstract
Previous research highlighted the effectiveness of cooperative learning in the four learning domains: physical, cognitive, social and affective. However, recent reviews have called for more empirical research on social and emotional learning based on contemporary theories, frameworks and assessment tools. Little is known [...] Read more.
Previous research highlighted the effectiveness of cooperative learning in the four learning domains: physical, cognitive, social and affective. However, recent reviews have called for more empirical research on social and emotional learning based on contemporary theories, frameworks and assessment tools. Little is known about the links between cooperative learning and two strong contemporary frameworks: the achievement goal theory and the four-branch model of emotional intelligence. The goal of this study was to assess the connections between cooperative learning, task and self-approach goals, and emotional intelligence in physical education classes. Forty primary education students (21 girls, 19 boys), 10–12 years (Mage = 10.87; SD = 0.85), enrolled in two different classes in only one school, participated. None of them had experienced cooperative learning as a pedagogical model before. The study followed a one group, pre-test-post-test, pre-experimental design. Both classes experienced the same cooperative learning intervention programme conducted in physical education, which included two consecutive learning units for a total of 16 sessions (2 per week/50 min each). The same physical education teacher, an expert in cooperative learning, conducted all sessions. Results showed that the cooperative learning framework helped increase students’ self-approach goals and their emotional control and regulation, and empathy. In conclusion, the present study reinforced the use of cooperative learning in physical education, because it can guide students to more adaptive motivational patterns and to develop their emotional intelligence. Furthermore, it contributes to the students’ social and emotional learning building quality relationships, learning to manage stressors, and evolve individually and in groups. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Relationship between Smoking, Physical Activity, Screen Time, and Quality of Life among Adolescents
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(21), 8043; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17218043 - 31 Oct 2020
Viewed by 655
Abstract
Background: Quality of life (QOL) is a crucial part of evaluating health conditions IN adolescents. The purposes of this study were to (1) examine the relationship of QOL and smoking, physical activity (PA) and screen time (ST) among Chinese adolescents, (2) explore the [...] Read more.
Background: Quality of life (QOL) is a crucial part of evaluating health conditions IN adolescents. The purposes of this study were to (1) examine the relationship of QOL and smoking, physical activity (PA) and screen time (ST) among Chinese adolescents, (2) explore the relationship between PA-ST combination and QOL of adolescents, and (3) investigate the dose-response relationship between PA-ST and QOL. Methods: This study randomly selected 12,900 adolescents (11–18 years) from 13 administrative regions in Shandong Province, China. The data gathering tools for Smoking (tobacco), PA (PAQ-A) and ST (average daily time for ST) and QOL questionnaire (child and adolescent quality of life scale) were completed among all adolescents. Statistical analysis was performed by T test, chi-square test and multiple linear regression. Results: 12,641 adolescents (aged 12–18) completed the study. In multiple linear regression models, the result demonstrated that the adolescents from rural areas, with high ST, low PA, and smoking, with older age and low socioeconomic status, showed a lower QOL score. First-time smokers under 10 years revealed the lowest QOL, and PA > 30 min five days per week have the highest QOL. In addition, boys and girls with PA > 30 min three to four days per week in high ST group obtain the higher scores (boys β = 5.951, girls β = 3.699) than low PA-low ST groups. Conclusions: Adolescents from rural areas suffer from a relatively poorer QOL. More than 30 min of PA five or more days for boys and three or four days per week for girls could decrease negative effects of ST and improve QOL. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Are the Parents’ and Their Children’s Physical Activity and Mode of Commuting Associated? Analysis by Gender and Age Group
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(18), 6864; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17186864 - 20 Sep 2020
Viewed by 910
Abstract
Background: Some studies have reported a positive parent–child association between physical activity (PA), but few have examined the difference in these associations concerning both genders. The objective of this study was to establish the association between moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and [...] Read more.
Background: Some studies have reported a positive parent–child association between physical activity (PA), but few have examined the difference in these associations concerning both genders. The objective of this study was to establish the association between moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and mode of commuting (MC) of the parents with their children by gender and age group. Methods: This cross-sectional study included 686 mothers and fathers (43.4 ± 6.5 years old) and their children (children 9.7 ± 1.7 y. and adolescents 14.0 ± 1.7 y.). Each participant completed a questionnaire on PA and MC. Chi-square test, odds ratio for categorical variables, and lineal regressions for continuous variables were used to examine the parent–child associations. Results: An inverse association was found between fathers–children in the weekend MVPA in children and between mothers–adolescents in out-of-school and weekend MVPA. An inverse association was found in MVPA between mothers-girls, and the different parents’ MC to work was positively associated with the MC to school in children and adolescents except for the association AC parents–adolescents. The AC was mainly associated between mothers and girls and boys. Conclusions: A weak association in parent–child MVPA but a strong association in MC between parent–child was found. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Physical Activity Behaviors of Children Who Register for the Universal, State-Wide Active Kids Voucher: Who Did the Voucher Program Reach?
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(16), 5691; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17165691 - 06 Aug 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1670
Abstract
Active Kids is a government-led, universal voucher program that aims to reduce the cost of participation in structured physical activity for all school-enrolled children in New South Wales (NSW), Australia. As part of the Active Kids program evaluation, this cross-sectional study examined the [...] Read more.
Active Kids is a government-led, universal voucher program that aims to reduce the cost of participation in structured physical activity for all school-enrolled children in New South Wales (NSW), Australia. As part of the Active Kids program evaluation, this cross-sectional study examined the Active Kids’ program’s reach to children in NSW and their physical activity behaviors, before voucher use. Demographic registration data from all children (4.5–18 years old) who registered for an Active Kids voucher in 2018 (n = 671,375) were compared with Census data. Binary and multinomial regression models assessed which correlates were associated with meeting physical activity guidelines and participation in the sessions of structured physical activity. The Active Kids program attracted more than half (53%) of all eligible children in NSW. Children who spoke a primary language other than English at home, were aged 15–18 years old, lived in the most disadvantaged areas, and girls, were less likely to register. Of the registered children, 70% had attended structured physical activity sessions at least once a week during the previous 12 months, whilst 19% achieved physical activity guidelines. Active Kids achieved substantial population reach and has the potential to improve children’s physical activity behaviors. Full article
Open AccessArticle
A Preliminary Investigation of the Relationship between Motivation for Physical Activity and Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties in Children Aged 8–12 Years: The Role of Autonomous Motivation
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(15), 5584; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17155584 - 03 Aug 2020
Viewed by 904
Abstract
While motivation for physical activity (PA) and PA participation have been linked, research on the relationship between motivation for PA and mental health outcomes is scant, with studies involving children largely underrepresented. Grounded in self-determination theory, this cross-sectional study aimed to determine whether [...] Read more.
While motivation for physical activity (PA) and PA participation have been linked, research on the relationship between motivation for PA and mental health outcomes is scant, with studies involving children largely underrepresented. Grounded in self-determination theory, this cross-sectional study aimed to determine whether autonomous motivation versus external motivation (a form of controlled motivation) for PA is associated with fewer emotional and behavioural difficulties and higher levels of PA in children. A sample of 87 children (aged 8–12 years) were recruited from five primary schools in Victoria, Australia. An adapted version of the Behavioural Regulation in Exercise Questionnaire (BREQ) was used to measure motivation for PA and structured parent-report questions were used to assess moderate-to-vigorous PA (MVPA) levels. Parents also completed the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) to measure children’s emotional and behavioural difficulties. Children’s autonomous motivation was associated with fewer emotional and behavioural difficulties (β = −0.25, p = 0.038) and higher levels of MVPA (β = 0.24, p = 0.014). These results indicate autonomous motivation is associated with improved mental health outcomes and higher levels of PA in children. Thus, PA interventions that promote autonomous motivation may enhance children’s mental health compared to interventions that promote mainly controlled forms of motivation. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Assessment of Attitudes Toward Physical Education by the Implementation of an Extracurricular Program for Obese Children
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(15), 5300; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17155300 - 23 Jul 2020
Viewed by 793
Abstract
The World Health Organization (WHO) identifies the importance of implementing physical activity programs such as physical education (PE) classes in schools. This study identifies the attitudes of obese children toward PE, before and after participation in a vigorous-intensity physical exercise program without the [...] Read more.
The World Health Organization (WHO) identifies the importance of implementing physical activity programs such as physical education (PE) classes in schools. This study identifies the attitudes of obese children toward PE, before and after participation in a vigorous-intensity physical exercise program without the participation of normal-weight peers using a questionnaire on Attitudes toward Physical Education (CAEF). 98 children between 8–11 years of age were randomized in an Experimental Group (GE) (n = 48) and a Control Group (CG) (n = 47). They were assessed using a questionnaire on Attitudes toward Physical Education (CAEF). All the study participants exhibited a BMI Z-score ≥ 2. Before the intervention, the only difference between boys and girls was “empathy to teacher and physical education subject” (p = 0.001, d de Cohen = 0.72, r = 0.34). The interaction between gender and training was only present in empathy for the teacher, with a medium effect size (η2 = 0.055). The implementation of PE with two hours per week elicits only a few effects over the attitude of obese children, even though with a certain engagement of gender through training in the adjustment of empathy for teachers and the PE class. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Linking Cooperative Learning and Emotional Intelligence in Physical Education: Transition across School Stages
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(14), 5090; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17145090 - 15 Jul 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 860
Abstract
The present research had two complementary aims: (a) to examine the associations between cooperative learning (CL) and emotional intelligence (EI) in physical education (PE) and (b) to explore and compare the use of CL in PE in primary education (PED), secondary education (SED) [...] Read more.
The present research had two complementary aims: (a) to examine the associations between cooperative learning (CL) and emotional intelligence (EI) in physical education (PE) and (b) to explore and compare the use of CL in PE in primary education (PED), secondary education (SED) and baccalaureate (BA). A total of 1332 students (682 males, 650 females) took part in the study. All participants were aged between 10 and 20 years old (M = 13.09; SD = 2.47) and belonged to 13 different schools in Southwest Spain. They completed the cooperative learning questionnaire (CLQ), referring to the PE classes, in addition to the emotional intelligence questionnaire in physical education (EIQPE). Positive and significant associations were found between CL and EI in all school stages. In addition, moderately strong associations were uncovered between CL and the different dimensions of EI: emotional recognition, emotional control and regulation and emotional empathy. Participants belonging to classrooms with larger cooperation indices presented higher levels of EI. Results also highlighted a greater use of CL in PE classes during the PED stage in comparison to the SED and BA stages. These outcomes are discussed in light of the existing literature and methodological implications are derived for teaching PE. The use of CL in PE is recommended because of its positive contribution to the affective domain through IE. This will be especially important during the SED and BA stages, where lower rates of CL were observed. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Influence of a Physical Exercise Program in the Anxiety and Depression in Children with Obesity
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(13), 4655; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17134655 - 28 Jun 2020
Viewed by 1295
Abstract
(1) Background: The high prevalence of childhood obesity and its multicausal etiology make it necessary to approach it through different strategies, whose objective is to promote the physical, mental, and social well-being of children. Regular physical activity, in addition to having positive [...] Read more.
(1) Background: The high prevalence of childhood obesity and its multicausal etiology make it necessary to approach it through different strategies, whose objective is to promote the physical, mental, and social well-being of children. Regular physical activity, in addition to having positive effects on the physical environment of those who practice it, influences positively in psychological aspects such as anxiety and depression, which are very frequent in children with obesity and overweight. (2) Objective: To analyze the changes produced by a program of physical exercise based on anthropometric indicators and levels of anxiety and depression in a population of Mexican children with obesity. (3) Methods: A longitudinal study with experimental group (EG) and control group (CG). The analysis population consisted of 105 children with a body mass index (BMI) for their gender and age group above the 95th percentile, of which 60 were girls and 45 were boys, with a mean age of 10.02 years (SD ± 0.79). By randomizing the participants, 54 were part of the EG and 51 of the, CG The EG participated in a physical exercise program, distributed in two weekly sessions, each lasting 50 min, for 20 consecutive weeks. The CG group continued its usual activities during the intervention period. An inferential analysis was performed between the socio-demographic, anthropometric and psychological variables. (4) Results: The implementation of a physical exercise program in children with obesity favors the appearance of positive thoughts, with improvements in their emotional well-being, self-perception and self-concept; although it does not produce significant changes in weight, height, Z-Score, level of anxiety or depressive thoughts. (5) Discussion: Regular physical exercise practice has positive effects on mental health, although new studies are required to analyze specifically its influence on anxiety and depression in children with obesity. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Motives of Future Elementary School Teachers to Be Physically Active
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(12), 4393; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17124393 - 18 Jun 2020
Viewed by 605
Abstract
The aim of this study was to determine the relationship between the motives for engaging in sports activities and the self-determination index (SDI) and how this in turn predicts the intentionality of future elementary school teachers to be physically active. Method: A total [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to determine the relationship between the motives for engaging in sports activities and the self-determination index (SDI) and how this in turn predicts the intentionality of future elementary school teachers to be physically active. Method: A total of 331 first-year students of the teacher training degree participated, 34.4% men and 65.6% women (M = 20.02; SD = 2.55). They answered the following questionnaires: “Behavioral Regulation in Exercise Questionnaire-3”, “Motives for Physical Activity Measure-Revised” and “Intention to be Physically Active”. Results: Fitness, fun and care of one’s appearance are the motives most valued by university students. A regression analysis (structural equation modeling) revealed that appearance and social motives were negatively related to SDI, although the model clearly predicted the intention to be physically active (R2 = 0.74). A second model, which positively related the appearance and competence motives with the intention to be active, improved the coefficient of determination (R2 = 90) and fit index. Conclusions: The motives for engaging in physical activity influence university students in different ways in relation to the SDI and strongly predict the intention to be physically active. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Associations of Heart Rate Measures during Physical Education with Academic Performance and Executive Function in Children: A Cross-Sectional Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(12), 4307; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17124307 - 16 Jun 2020
Viewed by 810
Abstract
The current evidence for a relation between children’s heart rate measures and their academic performance and executive functioning is infancy. Despite several studies observing dose-response effects of physical activity on academic performance and executive function in children, further research using objective measures of [...] Read more.
The current evidence for a relation between children’s heart rate measures and their academic performance and executive functioning is infancy. Despite several studies observing dose-response effects of physical activity on academic performance and executive function in children, further research using objective measures of the relative intensity of physical activity (e.g., heart rate) is warranted. The present study aimed to inspect associations between heart rate response and various academic performance indicators and executive function domains. A total of 130 schoolchildren between the ages of 9 and 13 years (M = 10.69, SD 0.96 years old; 56.9% boys) participated in a cross-sectional study. Children’s heart rate data were collected through participation in physical education classes using the polar TeamTM hardware and software. One week before heart rate measures, academic performance was obtained from the school records in maths, Spanish language, Catalan language, physical education, and Grade point average. Executive function was measured by two domains, cognitive flexibility with the Trail Making Test and inhibition with the Stroop test. Associations between children’s heart rate data and academic performance and executive function were analyzed using regression models. Academic performance was found to be positively related to four heart rate measures (β range, 0.191 to 0.275; all p < 0.040). Additionally, the hard heart rate intensity level was positively related to two academic indicators (β range, 0.183 to 0.192; all p < 0.044). Three heart rate measures were associated with two cognitive flexibility subdomains (β range, −0.248 to 0.195; all p < 0.043), and three heart rate measures were related to one inhibition subdomain (β range, 0.198 to 0.278; all p < 0.028). The results showed slight associations of heart rate responses during physical education lessons with academic performance but did not clearly indicate associations with executive function. Future experimental studies testing associations between different bouts of intensity levels are needed to disentangle the relationship with brain function during childhood. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Accessing Physical Activity and Health Disparities among Underserved Hispanic Children: The Role of Actual and Perceived Motor Competence
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(9), 3013; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17093013 - 26 Apr 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1018
Abstract
Promoting physical activity (PA) and eliminating health disparities among underserved minority children is a public health priority. The main purpose of this study was to examine the relationship of actual motor competence (a set of object control skills) and perceived motor competence with [...] Read more.
Promoting physical activity (PA) and eliminating health disparities among underserved minority children is a public health priority. The main purpose of this study was to examine the relationship of actual motor competence (a set of object control skills) and perceived motor competence with PA participation and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) among underserved Hispanic children who were born in the U.S. Guided by Stodden et al.’s conceptual model, we tested the direct and indirect effects (mediational model) of actual motor competence on health-related outcomes (PA and HRQoL) through perceived motor competence. Participants were 215 underserved Hispanic children (Mage = 10.55 years, SD = 0.53 [age range 10–12]; 51.6% boys), recruited from four elementary schools in the southwestern U.S., who completed validated questionnaires assessing their perceived motor competence, PA, and HRQoL. Their actual motor skills were assessed using PE MetricsTM. After examining the associations among the variables, we tested the hypothesized model using structural equation modeling (SEM; AMOS 25). The hypothesized model indicated a good fit (χ²/df = 38.427/24 = 1.60 < 5; non-normed fit index (NFI) = 0.93; comparative fit index (CFI) = 0.968; root mean square error of approximation (RMSEA) = 0.053 [0.016, 0.083]). The effect of actual motor competence on PA and HRQoL was fully mediated by perceived motor competence. The findings demonstrated the mediating role of perceived motor competence between actual motor competence and health-related outcomes (PA and HRQoL) among underserved Hispanic children. The results highlight that actual motor competence significantly predicted underserved Hispanic children’ perceived motor competence, which in turn positively predicted their PA and HRQoL. These findings have significant practical implications for future intervention strategies of randomized clinical trials in schools aimed at promoting PA and HRQoL and eliminating health disparities among underserved Hispanic children. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Movement in High School: Proportion of Chinese Adolescents Meeting 24-Hour Movement Guidelines
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(7), 2395; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17072395 - 01 Apr 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 898
Abstract
The purposes of this study were (a) to examine the proportions of adolescents in China who partially or fully meet three 24-h movement guidelines on physical activity, screen-time, and sleep duration and (b) to examine whether there were gender differences in the proportion [...] Read more.
The purposes of this study were (a) to examine the proportions of adolescents in China who partially or fully meet three 24-h movement guidelines on physical activity, screen-time, and sleep duration and (b) to examine whether there were gender differences in the proportion of boys and girls meeting these guidelines. The sample was made up of high school adolescents from an eastern province of China (N = 1338). The participants completed a self-reported survey on demographic variables and weekly health behaviors including physical activity, screen-time, and sleep duration. A frequency analysis was conducted to summarize the number of 24-h movement guidelines met of the total sample and by gender; chi-squared tests were used to examine the gender differences in the proportion of students meeting different guidelines, independently and jointly. A high proportion of adolescents did not meet physical activity (97.2%, 95% CI = 96.2–98.0%), or sleep (92.1%, 95% CI = 90.6–93.5%) guidelines, but met screen-time (93.6%, 95% CI = 92.4–94.7%) guidelines. Overall, only 0.3% (95%CI = 0.1–0.6%) of the sample met all three guidelines, 8.8% (95%CI = 7.5–10.2%) met two, 85.8%% (95%CI = 84.0–87.4%) met one, and 5.1% (95%CI = 4.0–6.4%) met none. There was no statistically significant percentage difference between female and male participants in meeting physical activity, screen-time viewing, or sleep duration guidelines, independently or jointly (p values > 0.05). These figures of participants meeting all three guidelines or physical activity and sleep independently are much lower than many estimates in prior research internationally. Considerations to improve adherence to physical activity and sleep guidelines are critical in this population. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
The Daily Mile Is Able to Improve Cardiorespiratory Fitness When Practiced Three Times a Week
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(6), 2095; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17062095 - 22 Mar 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1337
Abstract
The Daily Mile is a promising initiative aimed at removing some of the barriers to physical activity in the school setting. This quasi-experimental study investigated the dose–effect of The Daily Mile on cardiorespiratory fitness, waist-to-height ratio, and body mass index (BMI) after a [...] Read more.
The Daily Mile is a promising initiative aimed at removing some of the barriers to physical activity in the school setting. This quasi-experimental study investigated the dose–effect of The Daily Mile on cardiorespiratory fitness, waist-to-height ratio, and body mass index (BMI) after a period of 3- and 6-months. A total of 279 students (mean age = 9 ± 1 years) participated in The Daily Mile while 269 students (mean age = 9 ± 1 years) did not (control group). A posteriori, the classes performing The Daily Mile on average two times per week were included in the 2_times subgroup, while those performing the activity on average three times per week in the 3_times subgroup. A significant difference was observed in favor of the experimental compared to the control group in the 6 Minute Run Test (F = 13.932, p = 0.008). Moreover, the improvement of the 6-minute run test was more pronounced for 3_times (effect size = 0.51) rather than for the 2_times subgroup (effect size = 0.29). No differences were observed in waist-to-height ratio and BMI scores. In conclusion, teachers are strongly recommended to implement The Daily Mile at least three times a week to see appreciable effects on cardiorespiratory fitness. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Physical Exercise, Fitness, Cognitive Functioning, and Psychosocial Variables in an Adolescent Sample
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(3), 1100; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17031100 - 09 Feb 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1491
Abstract
The objective of this paper was to evaluate the relationship between physical exercise and physical fitness with cognitive and psychosocial functioning in a group of adolescents. 167 teenagers between 14 and 15 years old (M = 14.53; SD = 0.50) from the [...] Read more.
The objective of this paper was to evaluate the relationship between physical exercise and physical fitness with cognitive and psychosocial functioning in a group of adolescents. 167 teenagers between 14 and 15 years old (M = 14.53; SD = 0.50) from the city of Malaga (Spain) participated in the study. This research used a comparative and predictive type of design. The Tanita® Body Composition Monitor BC-601, some Eurofit battery tests, the D2 Attention Test, the WISC-IV Scale Symbols and Keys tests, the Form 5 Self-Concept Questionnaire (AF5), the General Self-Efficacy Scale (GSE) and the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-28) were used to evaluate the study variables. The results found in this research pointed to a positive relationship between physical exercise and physical fitness with cognitive and psychosocial functioning in the adolescents analyzed. For example, adolescents who practiced more physical exercise had better scores on variables such as selective attention (p < 0.001; η2 = 0.10), processing speed (p < 0.001; η2 = 0.09) or general self-efficacy (p < 0.001; η2 = 0.15). In addition, cardiorespiratory fitness was the best predictor of test scores to assess cognitive ability and psychosocial variables. These findings suggest the need to promote physical exercise among young people because of its implications for various facets of their health and development Full article
Open AccessArticle
Psychological Symptomatology in Informal Caregivers of Persons with Dementia: Influences on Health-Related Quality of Life
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(3), 1078; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17031078 - 08 Feb 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1007
Abstract
Informal caregivers of persons with dementia often report high levels of anxiety, depression and burden. Nonetheless, other less evaluated psychological symptoms might also influence their health-related quality of life (HRQoL). The aim of this study was to comprehensively analyse other psychological symptoms and [...] Read more.
Informal caregivers of persons with dementia often report high levels of anxiety, depression and burden. Nonetheless, other less evaluated psychological symptoms might also influence their health-related quality of life (HRQoL). The aim of this study was to comprehensively analyse other psychological symptoms and their influence on the health-related quality of life of informal caregivers. Fifty-four informal women caregivers and fifty-six women non-caregivers were recruited to participate in the study. Psychological symptoms were assessed using the Symptom Check-List-90-Revised (SCL-90-R) questionnaire and the HRQoL with the EuroQoL-Five Dimensions and Three Levels (EurQoL-5D-3L) questionnaire. Significant between-group differences were found in the majority of scales in the SCL-90-R questionnaire (p < 0.01) and caregivers also reported a worse HRQoL than non-caregivers (p < 0.05). Several psychological symptoms such as obsession-compulsive (β = 0.47), hostility (β = 0.59), and somatization (β = −0.49) had a significant impact on caregivers’ HRQoL (R2 explained between 0.17 and 0.30 of the variance). Caregivers are at a higher risk of suffering other psychological symptoms and show a moderate–high level of psychiatric morbidity, which therefore explains the poorer HRQoL outcomes. Supporting interventions should be provided to mitigate these psychological symptoms in order to improve their general distress and HRQoL. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Differences among Saudi and Expatriate Students: Body Composition Indices, Sitting Time Associated with Media Use and Physical Activity Pattern
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(3), 832; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17030832 - 29 Jan 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1005
Abstract
Background: Being overweight at a young age is a predictor of developing obesity and related complications later in adulthood, posing a high risk to public health. Various ethnic subgroups have been identified as having a higher prevalence of overweight or obese. Saudi [...] Read more.
Background: Being overweight at a young age is a predictor of developing obesity and related complications later in adulthood, posing a high risk to public health. Various ethnic subgroups have been identified as having a higher prevalence of overweight or obese. Saudi Arabia is one of the fastest-growing economies in the world, where the expatriate population comprises 33% of its total population. The objective of this study was to investigate differences in body composition indices, sitting time associated with media use, and physical activity pattern among a sample of local and expatriate school students in Saudi Arabia. Methods: 500 students (aged 8–18 years) from various schools were invited to participate in this study. Body weight, waist circumference (WC) and height were measured using a portable digital metric scale, standard measuring tape and wall mounted tape respectively. Participants and their parents were jointly asked to report the average time that the participant spent sitting using media (watching TV, playing video games, and using the internet and other screen-based devices etc.) per day. The pattern of physical activity among participants was measured using a short form of the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ). Basal metabolic rate (BMR) and total daily energy expenditure (TEE) were estimated from body weight, height, age, sex and physical activity, according to the Harris–Benedict equation. Results: Data from 450 (90%) of the participants were used for analysis. The mean age of the participants was 14.55 ± 1.74 years. Body mass index (BMI), WC, waist to height ratio (WHtR), BMR and TEE differed significantly among the participants. Physical fitness score negatively correlated with BMI and WC, while sitting time associated with media use positively correlated with BMI, WC, WHtR and physical fitness score, among both Saudi and expatriate participants. Conclusions: Body composition indices and sitting time associated with media use were higher among Saudi boys and expatriate girls. Expatriate boys and girls were reported to be physically more active than their Saudi counterparts. BMR and TEE were higher among expatriate boys and Saudi girls. Although this study provides useful information about the association of body composition indices, sitting time associated with media use, and physical activity pattern among local and expatriate school students in SA, similar studies involving a larger study sample, with equal gender representation, are further required to determine various factors associated with this link. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Chess Players Increase the Theta Power Spectrum When the Difficulty of the Opponent Increases: An EEG Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(1), 46; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17010046 - 19 Dec 2019
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1615
Abstract
The present study aimed to analyze differences in the electroencephalogram (EEG) power spectrum (theta, alpha, and beta) between participants who won (winning group) and those who lost (losing group) in three different chess games: against their same Elo (100% chess games), 25% over [...] Read more.
The present study aimed to analyze differences in the electroencephalogram (EEG) power spectrum (theta, alpha, and beta) between participants who won (winning group) and those who lost (losing group) in three different chess games: against their same Elo (100% chess games), 25% over their Elo (125% chess games), and 25% under their Elo (75% chess games). EEG was assessed at baseline and during the chess games. Method: 14 male chess players (age: 35.36 ± 13.77 and Elo: 1921 ± 170) played three games of 3 min, plus two additional seconds per move, while EEG was assessed. There were three difficulty levels (75%, 100%, and 125%), with two games (one with white pieces and another with black pieces) per level. The winning group showed higher theta power in the frontal, central, and posterior brain regions when difficulty increased (p-value < 0.05). Besides this, alpha power showed higher values (p-value < 0.05) in 125% games than in 75% chess games in C3, T3, T4, T5, and T6. The losing group showed a significant decrease (p-value < 0.05) in the beta and alpha power spectrum in frontal, central, parietotemporal, and occipital areas, when the opponent’s difficulty increased. Moreover, between groups, analyses showed higher theta power in the losing group than in the winning group, in C3, T5, T6, P4, and Pz (p-value < 0.05). Therefore, the winning group was able to adapt to each difficulty level, increasing theta power in the frontal, central, and posterior brain areas, as the efficiency hypothesis postulated. These changes were not observed in the losing group. Moreover, increases in alpha power during the most difficult games, in comparison with the easier, could have been caused by creative ideation and divergent thinking, as participants looked for alternative solutions against a higher-skilled opponent. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
No More Bricks in the Wall: Adopting Healthy Lifestyles through Physical Education Classes
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(23), 4860; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16234860 - 03 Dec 2019
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1219
Abstract
Despite the multiple benefits associated with practicing physical activity regularly, less than 20% of the population do it on a daily basis. Physical education classes could contribute, during childhood and adolescence, to consolidating adherence to healthy lifestyle habits. The present study involved 606 [...] Read more.
Despite the multiple benefits associated with practicing physical activity regularly, less than 20% of the population do it on a daily basis. Physical education classes could contribute, during childhood and adolescence, to consolidating adherence to healthy lifestyle habits. The present study involved 606 secondary school students between the ages of 13 and 19. We analysed the relationships between the perception of psychological control and support for autonomy, the satisfaction and frustration of psychological needs, mind-wandering and mindfulness, positive and negative emotions, motivation towards physical education classes, physical activity and the intention to be physically active—all through a structural equation model, which presented acceptable goodness-of-fit indices. The results showed that students who feel more autonomous see that their psychological needs are met and feel emotionally positive; this will result in the development of autonomous motivation towards physical education classes and physical activity that, in turn, could lead to a greater intention to be physically active. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Review

Jump to: Research

Open AccessReview
Active Commute in Relation to Cognition and Academic Achievement in Children and Adolescents: A Systematic Review and Future Recommendations
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(24), 5103; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16245103 - 13 Dec 2019
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1363
Abstract
Active commuting to school (ACS) is an important source of physical activity among children. Recent research has focused on ACS and its benefits on cognition and academic achievement (AA), factors important for success in school. This review aims to synthesize literature on the [...] Read more.
Active commuting to school (ACS) is an important source of physical activity among children. Recent research has focused on ACS and its benefits on cognition and academic achievement (AA), factors important for success in school. This review aims to synthesize literature on the relationship between ACS and cognition or AA among children and adolescents. Peer-reviewed articles in PubMed, Web of Science, PsycINFO and Cochrane Library assessing ACS with cognition and/or AA among children, until February 2019, were selected. Twelve studies across nine countries (age range 4–18.5 years) were included. One study used accelerometers, whereas all others used self-report measures of ACS. A wide range of objective assessments of cognitive functioning and AA domains were used. Five among eight studies, and four among six found a positive relationship between ACS and cognitive or AA measure, respectively. Four studies found dose–response relationships, and some studies found sex differences. The quantitative analysis found that ACS was not significantly associated with mathematics score (odds ratio = 1.18; CI = 0.40, 3.48). Findings are discussed in terms of methodological issues, potential confounders, and the strength of the evidence. Future studies should conduct longitudinal studies and use objective measures of ACS to understand this relationship further. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Back to TopTop