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Physical Fitness and Somatic Characteristics of the Only Child


Rodrigues, Luis P; Lima, Ricardo Franco; Silva, Ana Filipa; Clemente, Filipe Manuel; Camões, Miguel; Nikolaidis, Pantelis Theodoros; Rosemann, Thomas; Knechtle, Beat (2020). Physical Fitness and Somatic Characteristics of the Only Child. Frontiers in Pediatrics, 8:324.

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine if only child show differences on somatic growth and physical fitness compared to be a child with siblings. The participants included 542 children (boys: N = 270; girls: N = 270) between 7 and 15 years of age. Somatic growth (height, weight, body mass index) and physical fitness (handgrip strength; flexed harm hang; 60-s sit-ups; standing long jump; 10-m shuttle run and PACER test) were assessed. Variance analysis revealed significant advantages for children with siblings in the flexed arm hang (p = 0.046), 60-s sit-ups (p = 0.002), 10-m shuttle run (p = 0.013) and PACER (p = 0.032). An examination of the possible differential effect of sex on the results revealed no significance for physical fitness variables, but significant interaction were found for weight (p = 0.004) and body mass index (p = 0.005). Despite a lack of interactions between offspring and sex in physical fitness, significant differences between sexes were found in all fitness variables. In conclusion, having siblings showed to be advantageous for general physical fitness in children. This evidence may be used for future analysis and interventions in motor competence, namely considering the growing number of only children in some regions of the world.

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine if only child show differences on somatic growth and physical fitness compared to be a child with siblings. The participants included 542 children (boys: N = 270; girls: N = 270) between 7 and 15 years of age. Somatic growth (height, weight, body mass index) and physical fitness (handgrip strength; flexed harm hang; 60-s sit-ups; standing long jump; 10-m shuttle run and PACER test) were assessed. Variance analysis revealed significant advantages for children with siblings in the flexed arm hang (p = 0.046), 60-s sit-ups (p = 0.002), 10-m shuttle run (p = 0.013) and PACER (p = 0.032). An examination of the possible differential effect of sex on the results revealed no significance for physical fitness variables, but significant interaction were found for weight (p = 0.004) and body mass index (p = 0.005). Despite a lack of interactions between offspring and sex in physical fitness, significant differences between sexes were found in all fitness variables. In conclusion, having siblings showed to be advantageous for general physical fitness in children. This evidence may be used for future analysis and interventions in motor competence, namely considering the growing number of only children in some regions of the world.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Institute of General Practice
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:25 June 2020
Deposited On:26 Jun 2020 12:21
Last Modified:26 Jun 2020 12:28
Publisher:Frontiers Research Foundation
ISSN:2296-2360
OA Status:Gold
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.3389/fped.2020.00324

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