The benefits of both physical activity and fitness are well established, as numerous studies have highlighted that an advanced capacity of cardio respiratory fitness in childhood is often associated with an improved cardiovascular profile in both childhood and adulthood. Similar findings have been expressed with regards to physical activity with those that are more active demonstrating a reduced risk of coronary heart disease, hypertension, stroke and type 2 diabetes in adulthood. Regardless of the well-established benefits of both physical fitness and physical activity, evidence suggests that children are opting for a sedentary lifestyle, with countless failing to achieve the minimal activity guidelines. Recent findings published in Scotland portray a worrying figure, with approximately one in three (35%) of Scottish adolescences aged 2 to 15 years of age apparently unable or unwilling to achieve the minimal activity guidelines. These findings are worrying due to the well-established associations between physical inactivity and being overweight and obese. It has been suggested that poor physical fitness may be a more powerful predictor for poor health than physical activity. Unfortunately there is a lack of evidence which has documented the associations between physical fitness and weight status.
Duncan Buchan, Weight Status, Physical Activity and the Associations with Health Related Physical Fitness in Nine to Twelve Year Old Scottish Children
Last date updated on July, 2014