Physical activity in an organized after school program: a pilot study

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Date: June 2010
From: Journal of Exercise Physiology Online(Vol. 13, Issue 3)
Publisher: American Society of Exercise Physiologists
Document Type: Report
Length: 4,496 words
Lexile Measure: 1200L

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Abstract :

Orlowski M, Hallam JS, Wonders KY. Physical Activity in an Organized After School Program: A Pilot Study. JEPonline 2010; (3): 12-21. After school programs offer significant opportunity to increase the physical activity levels of children. The purpose of this mixed methods investigation was to describe the fitness and physical activity levels of children enrolled in a multi-site after school program, and to, explore environmental and psychosocial variables related to after school physical activity levels. A total of 91 students (average age 7.43 [+ or -] 0.57 years) completed fitness testing. On average, the students scored in the 40th percentile or below for each of the fitness components. Participants also spent an average of 155 [+ or -] 9.57 minutes of the total 180 minutes in the after school program participating in light, sitting activities. The most common light activities were homework, snack, arts and crafts, cards, and socializing with friends. There was a moderate relationship (r = 0.32, p = 0.06) between minutes spent in light/sedentary activity and BMI; however, low variability in physical activity minutes may have influenced the relationship. Descriptively, 60% of the overweight or obese participants spent the entire 180 minutes at the after school program in light activity. Semi-structured focus groups revealed that the social context of activities was also an important theme in after school programs. Reporting whom they were doing an activity with was the most commonly reported aspect of any activity. Key Words: Physical Activity, Children

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A361184704