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Socioeconomic Position and the Tracking of Physical Activity and Cardiorespiratory Fitness From Childhood to Adulthood

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Cleland, VJ and Ball, K and Magnussen, CG and Dwyer, T and Venn, AJ (2009) Socioeconomic Position and the Tracking of Physical Activity and Cardiorespiratory Fitness From Childhood to Adulthood. American Journal of Epidemiology, 170 (9). pp. 1069-1077. ISSN 0002-9262

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Abstract

This study examined the influence of childhood socioeconomic position (SEP) and social mobility on activity and fitness tracking from childhood into adulthood. In a prospective cohort of 2,185 Australian adults (aged 26–36 years), first examined in 1985 (at ages 7–15 years), self-reported physical activity and cardiorespiratory fitness (subsample only) were measured. SEP measures included retrospectively reported parental education (baseline) and own education (follow-up). There was little evidence of a relation between childhood SEP and activity tracking, but high childhood SEP (maternal education) was associated with a 59% increased likelihood of persistent fitness, and medium childhood SEP (paternal and parental education) was associated with a 33%–36% decreased likelihood of persistent fitness. Upward social mobility was associated with a greater likelihood of increasing activity (38%–49%) and fitness (90%), and persistently high SEP was associated with a greater likelihood of increasing activity (males: 58%) and fitness (males and females combined: 89%). In conclusion, persistently high SEP and upward social mobility were associated with increases in activity and fitness from childhood to adulthood. Findings highlight socioeconomic differentials in activity and fitness patterns and suggest that improvements in education may represent a pathway through which physical activity levels can be increased and health benefits achieved.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: CDAH
Journal or Publication Title: American Journal of Epidemiology
Page Range: pp. 1069-1077
ISSN: 0002-9262
Identification Number - DOI: 10.1093/aje/kwp271
Additional Information: The definitive publisher-authenticated version http://www.oxfordjournals.org/ Copyright © 2009 Oxford University Press
Date Deposited: 07 Jul 2010 06:30
Last Modified: 18 Nov 2014 04:11
URI: http://eprints.utas.edu.au/id/eprint/9878
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