Physical activity levels and motor skills of 5th to 7th grade students in Nigde Province
The physical activity (PA) and motor skill levels (MS) (flexibility, balance, speed, sit-up, hand grip strength, standing long jump) were determined for 5th to 7th grade students from central schools in Nigde Province, Turkey according to age and gender and to investigate the relationships. PAL was determined by means of Physical Activity Scale for Adolescents. MS included hand grip, standing long jump, flamingo balance, sit-and-reach and sit-up tests from Eurofit Test battery. Speed performance was tested with a 20-metre speed test. Independent samples t-test determined the difference between the males and females. One Way ANOVA test established the status of PAL and MS according to age. Source of difference Scheffe test was employed. Bivariate correlation determined the relationship between PAL and MS of gender groups. An inverse proportion was observed between age and PAL means for both genders. PAL of males was significantly higher than those of females. The relationship between the MS and PAL for males produced a negative relationship between PAL and BMI, but a positive significant relationship between sit-ups and standing long jump. For females, a negative significant relationship was observed between PAL and BMI and grip strength. Sit-ups, hand grip and standing long jump of males were significantly higher than those of females. MS increased significantly as age increased. PAL was higher for males than females and there was a decrease as age increased.
Keywords: 5th to 7th Grade students; Physical activity; Motor skills; Gender and age differences