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The association between physical fitness, sports club participation and body mass index on health-related quality of life in primary school children from a socioeconomically deprived area of England

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Laura BasterfieldORCiD, Dr Brook Galna, Guoda Karoblyte



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


We examined associations between physical fitness components, body mass index (BMI) and sports club participation on health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in 8- to 11-year-old children from a socioeconomically deprived region of England. From May-October 2019, 432 children completed the HRQoL questionnaire Kidscreen-27 and Leisure Time Physical Activity Survey, and a physical fitness testing battery of 20 m shuttle run test (20mSRT), handgrip strength (Handgrip), standing broad jump (Broad Jump), and sit-and-reach. Height, body mass, BMI and somatic maturity data were collected. Comparisons with reference populations were undertaken using a quintile framework. Linear and quantile regression assessed associations between physical fitness components and HRQoL variables. Using English Indices of Multiple Deprivation, 90% of children were from the most deprived quintile and 39% were overweight or obese. More children scored poorly on the Physical Wellbeing (40%) and Psychological Wellbeing (45%) HRQoL domains than the reference population (31%). Physical fitness scores were generally classed as ‘low’-’very low’ (42–58%). 20mSRT and Broad Jump performance explained an additional 10.7% of variance in Physical Wellbeing after adjusting for BMI z-score, sex and age (total R2 21.2%). Quantile regression identified a subset of children who rated Physical Wellbeing as high regardless of 20mSRT performance. Sports club participation was associated with better 20mSRT and Broad Jump performance, and all domains of HRQoL. Our data indicate that some physical fitness components and sports club participation are positively associated with HRQoL of children from socioeconomically deprived areas, irrespective of BMI z-score. Interventions to improve HRQoL should consider both aspects.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Basterfield L, Burn NL, Galna B, Karoblyte G, Weston KL

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Preventive Medicine Reports

Year: 2021

Volume: 24

Print publication date: 01/12/2021

Online publication date: 13/09/2021

Acceptance date: 06/09/2021

Date deposited: 15/09/2021

ISSN (print): 0091-7435

ISSN (electronic): 2211-3355

Publisher: Elsevier BV


DOI: 10.1016/j.pmedr.2021.101557


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