n African Journal for Physical Health Education, Recreation and Dance - The effect of a ten month physical activity intervention programme on body composition of 9-13 year-old boys and physical activity - : health and physical activity

Volume 18, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1117-4315


Excessive body fat is one of the main contributing factors in many health related health debilitating diseases, such as diabetes, obesity, hypertension and coronary arterioscleroses. The objective of this study was to determine whether a ten month physical activity intervention (PAI) programme could alter the body composition of 9-13 year old boys. A total of 322 (173=experimental group (EG) and 149=control group (CG)) from two primary schools in Gauteng province of South Africa were studied. Body composition measures were assessed by body mass index and percentage body fat using the protocol of International Society for Kinanthropometry (ISAK, 2001). Body mass index (BMI) which was calculated as body mass/stature2 (kg/m2) was used to predict obesity. Percentage body fat was determined according to the formula developed by Slaughter, Lohman, Boileau, Horswill (1988). Descriptive statistics, pre-test and post-test comparisons were done by dependent t-test using Statistica software. Statistical significance was set at p<0.05 and practical significant levels were set at ≥ 0.8. Slight decrease in percentage body fat was found among boys in the EG as compared to those the CG after the ten month of PAI. The CG showed a practical significant increase of 4.21 (pre-test =16.28; post-test =20.49) ( ≥ 0.2) in percentage body fat. It was evident from these findings that the participation in the PAI had beneficial health outcomes. Therefore, strategies for the inclusion of physical activity programmes in schools and after-school community physical activity programmes are recommended.

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