Longitudinal associations between motor competence and different physical activity intensities: LabMed physical activity study
An appropriated level of motor competence is essential for children´s healthy growth and development and a key factor in the promotion of lifelong active lifestyles and health.
The purpose of this study was to examine associations between motor competence and different physical activity intensities (light, moderate, moderate-to-vigorous and vigorous physical activity), as well as total physical activity, over a two-year period, in adolescents. The sample comprised of 103 adolescents (13.49 ± 0.87 years, 53 girls), from the north of Portugal. Motor competence was evaluated with the body coordination test, Körperkoordination-Test-für-Kinder. Physical activity was objectively assessed with GT1M accelerometers (ActiGraph, Pensacola, FL, USA). Physical activity variables were expressed as proportions of accelerometer wear time. Regression analyses showed positive longitudinal associations between motor competence at baseline and moderate physical activity (B = 0.0033, p = 0.018), moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (B = 0.0052, p = 0.024) and total physical activity (B = 0.067, p = 0.040) at follow up, after adjustments for age, sex, the corresponding physical activity intensity at baseline, body mass index, pubertal stage and socioeconomic status. Our ﬁndings highlight the importance of motor competence development to promote moderate-to-vigorous physical activity during adolescence.