Childhood obesity is a major public health challenge. Summer camps for children with obesity represent an alternative setting to improve eating and physical activity habits. Here we evaluated if the participation in the camp improves objectively measured physical activity and sedentary behavior and whether there are differences between male and female participants. Twenty-eight children, 13 males and 15 females (body mass index >97◦ centile, weight excess >30%, Tanner stage I), agreed to participate in an 8-day camp. During the summer camp, children participated in sports-like games and outdoor activities for at least 3 h a day, and the school-camp staff also provided a theoretical nutritional learning plan. Accelerometry-derived physical activity was measured through the SenseWear Mini Armband during a week at home and during the camp experience. Before camping, the participants were far above the minimum daily values of moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity (MVPA) to be considered sufficiently active (≥60 min/day), but male participants were more active than females (MVPA: 186.2 ± 94.2, 111.0 ± 64.7; P = 0.020). Male participants increased their MVPA (234.3 ± 114.8, P = 0.020), whereas females not (111.9 ± 52.9, P = 0.020). No difference emerged for the sedentary behavior either before or during the camp. This study suggests that participation in a summer camp for obese children can determine different responses in physical activity levels, depending on the sex of young participants. Thus, summer camps for obese children should put particular attention on female participants, besides reducing sedentary behavior in both males and females.

Objectively Measured Physical Activity Increases Only in Males During a Summer Camp for Obese Children

Izzicupo, Pascal
Primo
;
Di Blasio, Andrea
Secondo
;
Di Credico, Andrea;Ghinassi, Barbara
;
Napolitano, Giorgio;Di Baldassarre, Angela;
2021-01-01

Abstract

Childhood obesity is a major public health challenge. Summer camps for children with obesity represent an alternative setting to improve eating and physical activity habits. Here we evaluated if the participation in the camp improves objectively measured physical activity and sedentary behavior and whether there are differences between male and female participants. Twenty-eight children, 13 males and 15 females (body mass index >97◦ centile, weight excess >30%, Tanner stage I), agreed to participate in an 8-day camp. During the summer camp, children participated in sports-like games and outdoor activities for at least 3 h a day, and the school-camp staff also provided a theoretical nutritional learning plan. Accelerometry-derived physical activity was measured through the SenseWear Mini Armband during a week at home and during the camp experience. Before camping, the participants were far above the minimum daily values of moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity (MVPA) to be considered sufficiently active (≥60 min/day), but male participants were more active than females (MVPA: 186.2 ± 94.2, 111.0 ± 64.7; P = 0.020). Male participants increased their MVPA (234.3 ± 114.8, P = 0.020), whereas females not (111.9 ± 52.9, P = 0.020). No difference emerged for the sedentary behavior either before or during the camp. This study suggests that participation in a summer camp for obese children can determine different responses in physical activity levels, depending on the sex of young participants. Thus, summer camps for obese children should put particular attention on female participants, besides reducing sedentary behavior in both males and females.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11564/748462
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