Measuring temporal differences in rural canadian children’s moderate-to-vigorous physical activity

Brenton L.G. Button, Andrew F. Clark, Gina Martin, Megan Graat, Jason A. Gilliland

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Articlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


The purpose of this study was to measure the factors that influence children’s moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) during school curriculum time, recess time, and outside school time in a rural area. During the Fall and Winter of 2016, 34 boys and 55 girls aged 8–14 years from rural communities in rural Northwestern Ontario participated in the Spatial Temporal Environment and Activity Monitoring project. The children’s MVPA was measured using an accelerometer, and child-level demographic, behavioral, and environmental data were gathered from surveys, passively logging global positioning units, and municipal datasets. Data on daily temperature and precipitation were gathered from the closest Environment Canada weather station. A mixed model was used to assess the relationship between child-and day-level factors and children’s MVPA. On average, children were getting 12.9 min of MVPA during recess, 17.7 min during curriculum time, and 29.0 min of MVPA outside school time. During all three time points, boys were more active than girls. During curriculum time, children in lower grades were more active, and the weather had differing impacts depending on the time of day. The findings of this study illustrate the differences in MVPA and the factors that influence MVPA by time of day. Examining different time segments provides valuable information for understanding children’s MVPA patterns.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8734
Pages (from-to)1-14
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number23
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec. 2020


  • Children
  • Physical activity
  • Rural population
  • Temporal


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