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Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2001 Apr;33(4):591-6.

Do 9- to 12 yr-old children meet existing physical activity recommendations for health?

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  • 1Research Unit for PE, Sport & Health, Institute for Learning, University of Hull, Hull HU6 7RX, United Kingdom.



The purpose of this study was to investigate whether a sample of 9- to 12-yr-old children fulfilled existing U.S. and UK physical activity recommendations for health.


Habitual physical activity levels of 79 pre- and early pubertal children were assessed using continuous heart rate monitoring over a period of 4 d. Mean, daily, cumulative physical activity levels spent above heart rate thresholds were compared with U.S. and UK recommended values.


In this study, when cumulative amounts of physical activity were considered, at intensities greater than 120 beats x min(-1) and 75% above resting heart rate, pre- and early pubertal British children appear to engage in sufficient physical activity to meet U.S. and UK minimum daily recommendations.


Interpretations of children's physical activity levels depend on thresholds set for intensity of physical activity and whether cumulative or continuous bouts of activity are included in the analysis.

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