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Medicina dello Sport 2017 June;70(2):163-75

DOI: 10.23736/S0025-7826.17.03033-2

Copyright © 2017 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English, Italian

Effects of physical activity duration on body mass and physical fitness in primary school children

Piero ASTEGIANO, Roberta BARTOLOMEI, Gian P. GANZIT , Giorgia MICHELETTI, Cristina MILANESE, Fiammetta SCARZELLA

Istituto di Medicina dello Sport FMSI di Torino, Turin, Italy


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BACKGROUND: This study examined the effects of number of years of practice of mini-volley training during curricular time on appropriate body development and physical fitness in primary school children.
METHODS: We recruited 68 females and 74 males (group A) that did physical activity (3 60-minute-lessons per week) in primary school for 4-5 years, 78 females and 82 males (group B) for 1-2 years and 190 males and females of control (group C). Anthropometric data, triceps skinfold, joint mobility of the spine and agility, with the Exagonal Obstacle Test (HOT), were evaluated. A questionnaire to assess knowledge in sports and on the effects of exercise was also administered.
RESULTS: In males, BMI resulted in the three groups A, B, C respectively of 19.1 (SD 3.4), 20.3 (SD 4.3) and 20.1 (SD 4.1) corresponding to 45°, 53° and 51° percentile of the population of northern Italy. In females the values were respectively 18.3 (SD 2.8), 19.3 (SD 2.8) and 19.4 (SD 3.2) corresponding to 39°, 48° and 50° percentile. The changes of BMI with age corresponding to a significant reduction in the percentile in both males and females. The HOT Test result respectively in the three groups of 14.8 s (SD 2.1), 19.1 (SD 5.3) and 23.7 (SD 6.3) in males. In females, the values were 14.4 (DS 2.2), 20.2 (2.8) and 23.7 (SD 6.1). The performance was significantly better in group A versus B and in group B versus C in males and females. The analysis of the questionnaires showed that the subjects of group A and B have a significantly better knowledge of sports, in relation to equipment and organization, as well as of the physical activity health benefits.
CONCLUSIONS: The results support the conclusion that the planned physical activity during the period of the Primary School, in the form of the mini-volleyball training, helps to produce morphological, cognitive and motor positive effects in relation to the number of years of practice.


KEY WORDS: Child - Body Mass Index - Skinfold thickness - Athletic performance

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