Dramatic decrease in muscular fitness in the Czech schoolchildren over the Last 20 years
Central European Journal of Public Health
Aim: Obesity and physical inactivity had already reached epidemic, becoming one of the leading causes of death and disability worldwide. The objective of this study was to investigate the current level and a nearly three decades' trend of muscular fitness (MF) and the nutritional state of Czech children. Methods: In 2013, cross-sectional epidemiological survey was conducted in schoolchildren with examination of the anthropometric characteristics and measured MF using a UNIFIT test, which
... test, which normative for MF categories was given as results of national monitoring data collected in 1987. In total 896 current schoolchildren (472 aged 8-9 years and 424 aged 12-13 years) were examined from selected children through stratified sampling from the Czech Republic. Results: Against 31% of children from 1986 there were 74% of current children classified as "poor" or "below normal" in the MF category (p < 0.001). MF was inversely associated with BMI. Poor posture was diagnosed in 24% of children, more frequently in overweight (OW) and obese (OB) children in comparison to normal body weight children (p < 0.001). In comparison to 10% of OW and OB children in 1991, using these cut-off points for body mass index references, the current prevalence of OW and OB doubled (19.8%). Conclusions: Current Czech schoolchildren showed a doubled prevalence of OW and OB during the last two decades and simultaneously during nearly three decades there were more than doubled prevalence of "poor" or "under normal" MF of children, with overall dramatic decrease of MF in current schoolchildren.