Doloma, D.*, Kampas, A., Agelousis, N., Michalopoulou, M.
Department of Physical Education & Sport Sciences, Democritus University of Thrace, Campus, Komotini, 69132, Greece.
The purpose of the study was to follow over time – from the first to the third grade – the correlation between the Body Mass Index (BMI) and the Physical Activity of elementary school children. Additionally, it has been examined the gender as differentiating factor of this correlation. At the beginning of the study, 100 students enrolled at the first grade in elementary school of Komotini participated. In the final research 20 male and 22 female students participated due to the fact that 58 students quit the research for personal reasons like changing of school or medical issues. Data collection included: a. somatometric measurements (weight and height to calculate BMI- BMI= weight / height2). Evaluation of the pedometric physical activity (PPA) of the students. In the begging of each year as well as in November, February, and May the students’ PPA was measured for seven continuing days whereas in October, December January, March, and April PPA was measured once, during the lesson of Physical Education. Statistical analysis of the data included descriptive statistic, repeated measurements analysis. The analysis of the data showed that: a. The PPA presented an evolutionary process with the students of the third grade achieving the best record. b. the female students achieved the indicators/criteria proposed by the various studies and organizations to minimize health risks. c. no differences were observed in PPA due BMI with overweight and obese students achieving the same record as normal-weight students. From the above is concluded that: a. the sample is classified as overweight confirming the high obesity rates in Greece. b. the sample and especially female students is not characterized by a lack of PPA. c. BMI is not a differentiating factor of PPA.
Keywords: Overweight; obesity; physical activity.