Title: Secular trends in anthropometric characteristics, physical fitness, physical activity, and biological maturation in Flemish adolescents between 1969 and 2005
Authors: Matton, Lynn
Duvigneaud, Nathalie
Wijndaele, Katrien
Philippaerts, Renaat
Duquet, William
Beunen, Gaston
Claessens, Albrecht
Thomis, Martine ×
Lefevre, Johan #
Issue Date: 2007
Publisher: Alan R. Liss
Series Title: American Journal of Human Biology vol:19 issue:3 pages:345-357
Abstract: In this study, secular trends in anthropometric characteristics, physical fitness, physical activity and biological maturity over the past 25 to 35 years in Flemish adolescents were investigated. Representative cross-sectional samples of 12-18-year-old secondary school children (11899 assessments in boys in 1969-1974, 4899 girls in 1979-1980, 1429 boys and 1772 girls in 2005) and parent-offspring pairs tested at approximately the same age during adolescence (55 father-son pairs, mean age fathers=15.47y, mean age sons=15.38y; 62 mother-daughter pairs, mean age mothers=16.63y, mean age daughters=15.01y) were used. The cross-sectional data were analysed in six yearly age-categories using Wilcoxon rank sum tests. For the parent-offspring data paired t-tests, simple linear regressions to adjust for parent-offspring differences in chronological age and multiple linear regressions to adjust for parent-offspring differences in chronological and skeletal age were conducted. The cross-sectional study generally revealed an increase in weight, stature, BMI, skinfolds and trunk-extremity index and a decrease in the performance on several physical fitness tests. In the parent-offspring study, only sons were maturationally advanced compared to fathers. Even after adjustment for parent-offspring differences in chronological age and in chronological and skeletal age, results for stature, trunk-extremity index and physical fitness were generally similar to the cross-sectional study. No secular trend was observed for sports participation. The fact that the positive secular trends in weight, BMI and skinfolds of the cross-sectional study were not entirely confirmed in the parent-offspring study is probably due to higher similarity in genetic and familial background, higher socio-economic status and more health-consciousness of the latter.
ISSN: 1042-0533
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IT
Appears in Collections:Department of Movement Sciences - miscellaneous
Exercise Physiology Research Group
Physical Activity, Sports & Health Research Group
× corresponding author
# (joint) last author

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