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Int J Pediatr. 2010;2010:468526. doi: 10.1155/2010/468526. Epub 2010 Jul 7.

Parental Influence on Young Children's Physical Activity.

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  • 1Department of Human Kinetics, Laurentian University, Sundbury, ON, Canada P3E 2C6.


Parents influence on their young children's physical activity (PA) behaviours was examined in a sample of 102 preschool-aged children (54 boys). Questionnaires regarding family sociodemographics and physical activity habits were completed. Results showed that children who received greater parental support for activity (B = .78, P < .10) and had parents who rated PA as highly enjoyable (B = .69, P < .05) were significantly more likely to engage in one hour or more of daily PA. Being an older child (B = -.08, P < .01), having older parents (B = -.26, P < .01), and watching more than one hour of television/videos per day (B = 1.55, P < .01) reduced the likelihood that a child would be rated as highly active. Children who received greater parental support for PA were 6.3 times more likely to be highly active than inactive (B = 1.44, P < .05). Thus, parents can promote PA among their preschoolers, not only by limiting TV time but also by being highly supportive of their children's active pursuits.

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