Sedentary Behavior Linked to Motor Coordination in Children

Low sedentary group more likely to have high motor coordination, regardless of physical activity

THURSDAY, Aug. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Sedentary behavior among children is linked to motor coordination, with those who engage in low levels of sedentary behavior more likely to have good motor coordination, regardless of physical activity, according to a study published online Aug. 15 in the American Journal of Human Biology.

Luís Lopes, from Minho University in Braga, Portugal, and colleagues conducted a cross-sectional school-based study involving 213 children aged 9 to 10 years to examine the correlation between sedentary behavior and motor coordination, accounting for physical activity and other confounders. Detailed objective information about daily physical activity and sedentary behavior over five consecutive days was collected using accelerometers. A body coordination test was used to measure motor coordination.

In receiver operative characteristic analysis, the researchers found that sedentary time significantly discriminated between children with low and high motor coordination, with a best trade-off between sensitivity and specificity achieved at ≥77.29 percent for girls and ≥76.48 percent for boys. The low sedentary group had a significantly increased likelihood of having good motor coordination, compared with the higher sedentary group. This association was independent of physical activity, accelerometer wear time, waist-to-height ratio, and maternal education level.

"It is very clear from our study that a high level of sedentary behavior is an independent predictor of low motor coordination, regardless of physical activity levels and other key factors," Lopes said in a statement. "The results demonstrate the importance of setting a maximum time for sedentary behavior, while encouraging children to increase their amount of physical activity."

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