Gender differences in physical activity of ten years old pupils / Razlike u tjelesnoj aktivnosti desetogodišnjaka s obzirom na spol

Donata Vidaković Samaržija, Marjeta Mišigoj-Duraković
2016 Croatian Journal of Education - Hrvatski časopis za odgoj i obrazovanje  
Insufficient physical activity (PA) of children and youth has become a growing problem in contemporary society. It is one of the factors affecting the increase of overweight preschool and young school-age children. The World Health Organization issued recommendations for children and young people to accumulate at least 60 minutes of moderate physical activity daily, but in spite of encouragement to engage in PA, the level of PA starts to decline already in adolescence (Armstrong, Welsman, &
more » ... y, 2000; Wickel, Eisenmann, & Welk, 2009) . The aim of this research was to determine the level of PA of fourth graders from several elementary schools in the city of Zadar, and differences in their PA with respect to gender. The sample consisted of 206 participants (111 female and 95 male students). The level of PA was estimated using the Physical Activity Questionnaire (PAQ-C) (Crocker, Bailey, Faulkner, Kowalski, & McGrath, 1997) . Basic descriptive indicators were calculated, while the Mann-Whitney U test was applied to test differences in the level of PA with respect to gender. Male students have a significantly higher overall level of PA than female students do (Z=-2.15, p=0.03) and they differ significantly in variables estimating the level of PA in school during break time (Z=-3.05, p=0.00) and during lunch break (Z=-3.74, p=0.00). Also, in other variables which do not show a statistically significant difference but estimate PA in the evenings, on weekends and PA by days, male students show higher levels, which means that they are physically more active. The level of PA in the total sample is low and very few respondents meet the recommended daily requirement for PA, which points to the necessity of promoting PA among all age groups, particularly among adolescents.
doi:10.15516/cje.v18i0.2166 fatcat:zznd6oucfbbchpdzqsvsropk7q