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Rev Panam Salud Publica. 2013 Nov;34(5):367-74.

[Increasing children's physical activity during school recess periods].

[Article in Spanish]

Author information

  • 1Departamento de Planificación y Asuntos Urbanos, Hunter College, City University of New York, Nueva York, Nueva York, Estados Unidos de América, john.chin@hunter.cuny.edu.
  • 2Asphalt Green, Nueva York, Nueva York, Estados Unidos de América.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

We examined whether schools' participation in the Recess Enhancement Program (REP) in the spring of 2011 was associated with higher rates of children's vigorous physical activity.

METHODS:

In REP, a coach guides children through age-appropriate games aimed at increasing their physical activity. During recess at 25 New York City public elementary schools (15 REP, 10 non-REP), researchers visually scanned predetermined areas (n = 1339 scans), recording the number of sedentary, walking, and very active children.

RESULTS:

Multivariate statistical analysis found that participation in REP was a significant predictor (P = .027) of the rate of vigorous physical activity (percentage very active in scan area) whose least-squares means were 41% in REP schools and 27% in non-REP schools. A significantly higher rate in REP schools persisted when the coach was not in the scan area, suggesting a change in the recess culture of REP schools.

CONCLUSIONS:

The rate of vigorous physical activity in REP schools was 14 percentage points, or 52%, higher than the rate in non-REP schools. This low-cost intervention might be a valuable addition to the tools for combating childhood obesity and worth replicating elsewhere.

PMID:
24553768
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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