Naitonal Kaohsiung Normal University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
Research Study Abstract
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Physical Activity and Physical Fitness in Adolescents With and Without Autism Spectrum Disorders
- Presented on May 29, 2014
Background: Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) is characterized by impairments in social interaction and communication skills and restrictive interests. ASD may also include delayed or impaired motor development. These social, behavioral, and perhaps motor impairments may interfere with a variety of physical activity (PA) opportunities, and therefore, put them into risk for not achieving sufﬁcient PA and maintaining health-related physical ﬁtness.
Purpose: To assess physical ﬁtness components and objectively measured PA levels in adolescents with and without ASD.
Methods: Thirty adolescent males with ASD and 35 typically developing (TD) adolescent males agreed to participate. The BROCKPORT Physical Fitness Test and the Actigraph uniaxial accelerometry were used. All participants wore the device during waking hours, except bathing or water activities for seven consecutive days. A 10-second epoch was utilized to record PA. The PA dependent variables used for analysis were daily average total PA, percentage of time spent in moderate PA (%MPA) and vigorous PA (%VPA). Differences between groups in the physical ﬁtness components were tested with independent t tests. Various intensities of PA were analyzed using 2 (group) by 2 (day of week) mixed-model ANOVAs.
Results: Main ﬁndings indicated that (1) adolescents with ASD demonstrated signiﬁcantly poor scores on 20-meter Progressive Aerobic Cardiovascular Endurance Run (17.77±13.23 vs. 42.09±15.63, t=-6.71, p<0.01), isometric push-up (31.03±14.74 vs. 40.00±0.00, t=-3.60, p<0.01), and ﬂexibility (right leg: 21.70±11.66 vs. 29.99±8.70, t=-3.27, p<0.01; left leg: 21.17±11.11 vs. 29.69±8.69, t=-3.47, p<0.01), (2) adolescents with ASD had signiﬁcantly lower PA (%MPA: 5.75±3.51 vs. 8.35±3.79%, F=8.11, p<0.01; total PA: 338.32±133.10 vs. 445.91±193.69, F=6.58, p<0.05) as compared to TD adolescents during weekdays, and (3) TD adolescents had signiﬁcantly higher PA during weekdays than during weekends (%MPA: 8.35±3.79% vs. 5.68±2.82%, F=19.16, p<0.01; total PA: 445.91±193.69 vs. 290.12±105.88, F=24.90, p<0.01).
Conclusion: Low PA of adolescents with ASD on weekdays require speciﬁc interventions.
Supported by Taiwan NSC grant 101-2410-H-017-027-MY2.
- Yu-Jen Liu 1
- Chien-Yu Pan 1
- Chia-Liang Tsai 2
- Chia-Hua Chu 1
- I Chiao Chung 3
National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan
Tainan Municipal Madou Junior High School, Tainan, Taiwan.
ACSM 2014 Annual Meeting