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Factors associated with muscular fitness phenotypes in Australian children: a cross-sectional study


Fraser, BJ and Blizzard, L and Cleland, V and Schmidt, MD and Smith, KJ and Gall, SL and Dwyer, T and Venn, AJ and Magnussen, CG, Factors associated with muscular fitness phenotypes in Australian children: a cross-sectional study, Journal of Sports Sciences, 38, (1) pp. 38-45. ISSN 0264-0414 (2020) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright 2019 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group

DOI: doi:10.1080/02640414.2019.1679575


To help inform strategies aimed at increasing muscular fitness levels, we examined factors associated with childhood muscular fitness (strength and power) that preceded the recently observed secular decline. Data were available from a nationally representative sample of Australian children aged 7-15 years in 1985 (n = 8469). Muscular fitness measures included strength (right and left grip, shoulder extension and flexion, and leg strength) and power (standing long jump distance). Anthropometric (adiposity, fat-free mass), cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF), flexibility, speed capability, physical activity (individual and parental), dietary quality and intake (fruit, vegetable, protein) and sociodemographic (area-level socioeconomic status (SES), school type) data were available. Statistical analyses included sex-stratified linear regression. Of all examined factors, measures of adiposity, fat-free mass, CRF, flexibility and speed capability were associated with muscular fitness at levels that met Cohen's threshold for important effects (r-squared = 0.02 to 0.28). These findings highlight the multifactorial relationship between muscular fitness and its determinants. Collectively, these factors were powerful in explaining muscular strength (females: r-squared = 0.32; males: r-squared = 0.41) and muscular power (females: r-squared = 0.36; males: r-squared = 0.42). These findings highlight modifiable and environmental factors that could be targeted to increase childhood muscular fitness.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:muscle strength, muscular power, epidemiology, cohort, children
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Epidemiology
Research Field:Epidemiology not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public health (excl. specific population health)
Objective Field:Behaviour and health
UTAS Author:Fraser, BJ (Dr Brooklyn Fraser)
UTAS Author:Blizzard, L (Professor Leigh Blizzard)
UTAS Author:Cleland, V (Associate Professor Verity Cleland)
UTAS Author:Smith, KJ (Dr Kylie Smith)
UTAS Author:Gall, SL (Associate Professor Seana Gall)
UTAS Author:Dwyer, T (Professor Terry Dwyer)
UTAS Author:Venn, AJ (Professor Alison Venn)
UTAS Author:Magnussen, CG (Associate Professor Costan Magnussen)
ID Code:136865
Year Published:2020
Web of Science® Times Cited:5
Deposited By:Menzies Institute for Medical Research
Deposited On:2020-01-20
Last Modified:2020-05-22

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