Health related fitness of schoolchildren aged 8-12 years of a public school from Bucaramanga

Ariza-García, C.L. and Parra-Patiño, J. and Otárola-Veas, V. and Suárez-Rodríguez, L.V. and Angarita-Fonseca, A.
UstaSalud, 24:32-39, 2015

Spanish Title: Aptitud Física relacionada con salud en niños escolarizados de 8 a 12 años de una institución pública de Bucaramanga


Objectives: to determine the level of RPF and to explore the association among aerobic fitness, flexibility, and muscle strength with overweight and obesity in schoolchildren 8-12 years.
Methods: a cross-sectional study was performed. Students from the fourth and fifth grade from the “Instituto Tecnologico Salesiano Eloy Valenzuela” we selected for convenience. The prevalence of overweight and obesity was determined according to the WHO-CDC and the FITNESS- GRAM. The HRPF was assessed using the FITNESSGRAM battery. Simple and multiple Poisson regression models were applied to calculate prevalence ratios (PR) and their confidence intervals 95% (95% CI).
Results: a total of 66 students (10.4 ± 0.82 years), 19.6% women, and 48.5% of the fourth grade, were included. 78.8% and 39.4% were below the healthy fitness zone in the trunk extension strength and the aerobic fitness qualities, respectively. The prevalence of overweight and obesity according to WHO-CDC criteria was 30.3%. The physical qualities associated with overweight and obesity were aerobic fitness (PR 2.32, 95% CI 1.08 to 4.96), and muscle strength of upper limbs (PR 2.53, 95% CI 1.28 to 9.69).
Conclusions: the percentage of children below the healthy area was higher in the muscular strength and aerobic fitness physical qualities, which were associated with overweight and obesity. This is especially relevant given that adequate aerobic fitness in childhood has been linked to a healthier cardio-metabolic profile.

Keywords: physical fitness; body mass index; muscle strength; child.