Static Body Balance Analysis Through An Electronic Baropodometer

Por: R.g. Bekedorf.

Athens 2004: Pre-olympic Congress

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It is well documented that physical activity is associated with improved physical performance and quality of life. However, there is a dearth of epidemiological data concerning the children’s physical activity in Greece. In our knowledge only one study has estimated the levels of physical activity in urban and rural Greek children [1]. Therefore, the aim of this study was to compare urban and rural Greek primary schoolchildren in physical activity.

The sample was comprised of 189 urban and 175 rural boys and 122 urban and 119 rural girls, all age 11-12 yrs at the time of testing. For the assessment of leisure physical activity levels, Past-year Leisure Physical Activity Recall Questionnaire [2] was utilized. Measurements included two levels of physical activity, moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and vigorous physical activity (VPA). The daily time spent at an intensity of  3 METs served as the indicator of MVPA, while the daily time spent at an intensity of  6 METs represented VPA. The study measured also the total of physical activity (TPA) as sum of MVPA and VPA. To evaluate differences in physical activity data in urban and rural subjects, Mann-Whitney test was used because of non-normal variances of the physical activity variables.

In Table 1 are presented the differences in physical activity between urban and rural Greek children. There were not found any significant differences in VPA and TPA between urban and rural Greek children however urban children participated significantly less in MVPA than rural children.

Discussion / Conclusions
According to the above results and considering that MVPA is highly associated with health and quality of life, a special care is needed to increase the participation of Greek urban children in physical activities. (e.g. community physical activity intervention programs).

[1]. Mamalakis G. et al. (2000). International Journal of Obesity, 24, 765-771.
[2]. Aaron D. et al. (1993). Medicine and Science in sports and Exercise, 7,847-853.

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