Physical Activity Guidelines and Cardiovascular Risk in Children

A Cross Sectional Analysis to Determine Whether 60 Minutes Is Enough

L. M. Füssenich; L. M. Boddy; D. J. Green; L. E. F. Graves; L. Foweather; R. M. Dagger; N. McWhannell; J. Henaghan; N. D. Ridgers; G. Stratton; N. D. Hopkins


BMC Public Health. 2016;16(67) 

In This Article


Subject Characteristics

Of the 233 children initially recruited, 182 children met criteria for accelerometer wear time coupled with adequate vascular measurements. Those who did not meet criteria were removed from analyses, there were no differences between included and excluded children across measured variables. Baseline characteristics are presented in Table 2. Boys had significantly higher VO2peak and DBP, whilst girls were significantly closer to PHV and had higher percentage body fat. Additionally, boys engaged in significantly more MVPA and VPA than girls (Table 2).

Active vs. Inactive Analysis

Inactive children had significantly higher percentage body fat and lower VO2peak compared to active children. No other significant differences were found between the two groups (Table 3). The odds for being 'higher risk' were 1.9 (95 % CI: 0.8–4.3) times higher in the inactive group than the active group (p = 0.126).

Gender Analysis

Boys were more active than girls (p < 0.001, Table 3) and active boys engaged in more MVPA than active girls (11 min/day, p = 0.004). Active boys had significantly lower percentage body fat and CCVR, and higher VO2peak than inactive boys (Table 3). Thirty seven percent of inactive boys were classed as 'at risk' compared to 10 % of the active boys (p = 0.028), the odds of being at risk were 5.1 times higher in the inactive boys than the active boys (95 % CI: 1.4 – 19.1, p = 0.015). Active girls engaged in significantly less sedentary behaviour compared to inactive girls (p < 0.001), no further differences were found.

Vigorous Physical Activity

Comparisons were made between the highest VPA quintile (Q5) and all others (Table 4). CCVR was significantly elevated in Q1. Q1, Q2 and Q4 had significantly higher percentage body fat. VO2peak was significantly lower in Q1 and Q2. The OR was significantly higher in Q1 than Q5 (OR 4.7, p < 0.05, Table 4; Fig. 1). When quintiles were examined by gender, no significant differences were found between quintiles (difference between Q1 and Q5: 6.1 (95 % CI: 0.6 – 59.5, p < 0.05) and 7.4 (95 % CI: 0.7 – 80.0, p < 0.05), in girls and boys respectively).

Figure 1.

Odds ratios for being at risk by quintiles of physical activity. *Significant difference between VPA quintile 1 and 5, P < 0.05. No significant differences across MPA quintiles. VPA = vigorous physical activity, MPA = moderate physical activity