Author(s): Sigmund E, De Ste Croix M, Miklnkov L, Frmel K
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Due to the increasing occurrence of obesity and low physical activity (PA) reported in school children there is a need to investigate PA patterns of preschool children. Our aim was to identify the PA of preschool children in comparison to the PA of teenagers and young adults. METHODS: PA of 104 Czech preschool children (aged 5-7 years), 1174 teenagers (aged 12-17 years) and 787 young adults (aged 18-24 years) was determined using Caltrac accelerometery. PA was evaluated on the basis of activity energy expenditure (AEE--kcal kg(-1) day(-1)). Subjects were monitored over 7 days to include a weekend. RESULTS: The AEE in preschool children was significantly higher in comparison to all age groups of teenagers and young adults during both weekdays and at the weekend (P<0.0001). On weekdays during leisure time, preschoolers were considerably more physically active than all categories of teenagers and young adults (P<0.001). Preschoolers show similarities in PA level between weekdays and weekends, unlike the older age groups. CONCLUSION: It seems to appear that organized daily PA (2x20 min of exercising on carpet, 50-70 min of walking outdoors) in preschool children along with enough space for spontaneous PA establishes prerequisites for their further healthy development.
This article was published in Eur J Public Health
and referenced in Journal of Obesity & Weight Loss Therapy