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Differences in health factors, physical education and physical activity in 10 year old children: A cross-sectional study in Västerbotten
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Epidemiology and Global Health. (SALUT)
2015 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Introduction The transformation towards a more sedentary lifestyle is not only affecting the health of adults but the health of children as well. According to the World Health Organisation, children between 5-17 years old should engage in 60 minutes of physical activity (PA) a day. However, both internationally and nationally, these recommendations are to a great extent not met. The aim of this study was to increase knowledge of differences and background characteristics in health factors in relation to participation in physical education (PE) and PA respectively, among ten year old children in Västerbotten. Method This cross-sectional study used data from the Salut Programme in Västerbotten, northern Sweden. The participants of this study were 1658 children in the 4th grade from seven out of fifteen municipalities in Västerbotten. The data was collected during 2013/2014 through a questionnaire. Health factors and background characteristics of those who had a regular attendance to physical education (RPE) were compared with those who had an irregular attendance to physical education (IPE). Among those who were RPE the differences in background characteristics and health factors in different groups of PA level during leisure time were analysed in a Chi2 analyses. Three health factors of interest with a p-value <0.010 were controlled for background characteristics. Results There were a significant difference between the RPE and IPE group in all health factors except feeling annoyed. Among those who were RPE, PA between three to four times per week was related to the most preferable health outcomes. The biggest differences in health factors were seen between the low and the moderate/high PA group. Concentration during lessons, sleep and enjoy being in school were chosen to be controlled for health characteristics. BMI and sleep was found to have a relation to concentration during lessons and enjoy being in school and sleep had the strongest connection to physical activity when controlling for other health characteristics. Conclusions. Because of the large differences between the low and the moderate/high PA group in health factors and the background characteristic sleep, an increase of PE in school as well as promoting the meaning of sleep for children’s well-being is needed. The results enhances the importance for children to be physically active during leisure time and not solely participate in PE. Actions towards making memberships in sports clubs and organisations be affordable for those of lower socioeconomic status to avoid further health gaps should be considered. Keywords Health, children, concentration, physical activity, physical education, pupils, self-rated health, sleep.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. , 22 p.
, Centre for Public Health Report Series, ISSN 1651-341X ; 2015:17
Keyword [en]
physical education, physical activity, pupils, children, västerbotten
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-104392OAI: diva2:819378
External cooperation
Västerbottens Läns Landsting/ SALUT
Educational program
Master's Programme in Public Health (one-year)
2015-05-25, Umeå, 13:42 (English)
Available from: 2016-04-07 Created: 2015-06-10 Last updated: 2016-04-07Bibliographically approved

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