INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ENVIRONMENTAL RESEARCH AND PUBLIC HEALTH
Volumen: 12, Numero: 9, Páginas: PP. 10362-10373
Active commuting (walking or cycling) to school has been positively associated with improved fitness among adolescents. However, current evidence lacks information on whether this association persists in children. The aim of this study was to examine the association of active commuting to school with different fitness parameters in Spanish school-aged children. A total of 494 children (229 girls) from five primary schools in Granada and Jaén (Spain), aged between eight and 11 years, participated in this cross-sectional study. Participants completed the Assessing Levels of Physical Activity (ALPHA) fitness test battery and answered a self-reported questionnaire regarding the weekly travel mode to school. Active commuting to school was significantly associated with higher levels of speed-agility in boys (p =0.048) and muscle strength of the lower body muscular fitness in girls (p = 0.016). However, there were no significant associations between active commuting to school and cardiorespiratory fitness and upper body muscular fitness. Our findings suggest that active commuting to school was associated with higher levels of both speed-agility and lower body muscular fitness in boys and girls, respectively. Future studies should confirm whether increasing active commuting to school increases speed-agility and muscle strength of the lower body.