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Motor Coordination, Physical Activity and VO2max as Predictors of Body Fat in Youth
- Presented on 25 October 2012
Aim The aim of this cross-sectional study was to explore relationships between motor coordination coefficient (MC), cardiorespiratory fitness (VO2max) moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and percentage of body fat (%BF) in children and adolescents from 6 to 19 years.
Methods 108 children and adolescents (65 girls, 60.2%) from 6 schools in Porto district took part in this study. This is a baseline of a 10-month school-based intervention “ACORDA Project” (ACORDA stands for obese children and adolescent involved in PA and diet program) with 38.9% of normal weight, 32.4% overweight and 28.7% obesity. To assess maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max), subjects were submitted to a continuous progressive treadmill exercise. Children were instructed to run until exhaustion, according to a standardized exercise protocol. PA was objectively measured with accelerometers (Actilife GT3x) and cut points for MVPA were set at 2000 counts·min-1. %BF was obtained trough DXA (whole body protocol). Tanner criteria was used for maturation status. The sum of 4 tests from Koordinations Test fur Kinder battery was used for MC.
Results A Linear regression analysis, adjusted for gender and maturation, showed that %BF was negatively associated with VO2max (β=-0.895; 95% CI: -0.959; -0.705; p<0.001), % of MVPA (β =-0.406; 95% CI: -3.447; -0.867; p=0.001) and motor coordination coefficient (β =-0.280; 95% CI: -0.151;-0.007; p=0.032). Forward, in a stepwise model, the associations remained only for VO2max =-0.844; 95% CI: -0.940; -0.590; p<0.001).
Conclusions Several studies consider the association among MC, physical fitness and PA, and recognize the potential importance of MC as a factor influencing levels of PA during childhood. Since children with lower MC are less likely to participate in PA, they may be at greater risk for overweight and obesity. However our results showed that VO2max persist as the most important predictor of %BF.