We investigated the associations of cardiometabolic risk factors with academic achievement and whether motor performance, cardiorespiratory fitness, physical activity, or sedentary behaviour mediated these associations. Altogether 175 children 6–8 years-of-age participated in the study. We assessed body fat percentage (BF%), waist circumference, insulin, glucose, triglycerides, HDL cholesterol, and systolic and diastolic blood pressure, leptin, alanine aminotransferase, and gamma-glutamyltransferase (GGT). Reading fluency, reading comprehension, and arithmetic skills were assessed using standardized tests. Speed/agility, balance, and manual dexterity test results were used to calculate motor performance score and physical activity was assessed by combined heart rate and movement sensor and cardiorespiratory fitness by maximal cycle ergometer test. In boys, BF% was inversely associated with reading fluency (β = −0.262, P = 0.007) and reading comprehension (β = −0.216, P = 0.025). Motor performance mediated these associations. Leptin was inversely related to reading fluency (β = −0.272, P = 0.006) and reading comprehension (β = −0.287, P = 0.003). The inverse association of leptin with reading fluency was mediated by motor performance. In girls, GGT was inversely associated with reading fluency independent of confounders (β = −0.325, P = 0.007). The inverse association of BF% with academic achievement among boys was largely explained by motor performance. Leptin in boys and GGT in girls were inversely associated with academic achievement independent of confounding factors.

Direct Link: https://doi.org/10.1080/02640414.2018.1449562

Journal: Journal of sports sciences. 2018 Oct 18;36(20):2296-303

Keywords: academic performance, children, fitness, metabolic syndrome, obesity, Physical Activity,

Applications: Physical Activity,

CamNtech Reference: AH18049

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