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Correlates of physical activity in children and adolescents with physical disabilities

a systematic review

Li, R., Sit, C.H.P., Duan, J.Z.J., Fan, T.C.M., McKenzie, T.L., & Wong, S.H.S. (2016). Correlates of physical activity in children and adolescents with physical disabilities: a systematic review. Preventive medicine (pp. 184-193)

Background: The benefits of physical activity (PA) for children with disabilities are well documented, and children with physical disabilities (PD) are often less active than peers with other disability types. Various correlates associated with PA in children with PD have been identified in separate studies, and a thorough analysis of these correlates could aid in understanding and designing interventions that promote children with PD to be more physically active. The purpose of this systematic review was to provide a comprehensive summary of the correlates of PA in children with PD.

Method: A systematic search using PubMed, CINAHL, Cochrane Library, PsychINFO, Eric, and EMbase was initiated in October 2014 to identify studies examining the correlates of PA in children with PD aged 6-18years. Two researchers independently screened studies, assessed their methodological quality, and extracted relevant data. The correlates were synthesized and further assessed semi-quantitatively.

Results: A total of 45 articles were included in the detailed review. Several modifiable physical, psychological, and environmental correlates were consistently and positively associated with PA in children with PD. Some non-modifiable correlates (e.g., intellectual ability, parents' ethnicity) were found to be consistently and negatively associated with PA.

Conclusions: The correlates of PA in children with PD are multifaceted and along many dimensions. This review can have implications for future studies and these may confirm the consistency of variables related to PA. Insights derived from the outcomes may also foster the measurement of the magnitude of associations that could assist the development of future interventions.

Uitgever(s): Elsevier,


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Ru Li
Cindy Sit
Joyce Duan
Thomas Fan
Thomas McKenzie
Stephen Wong

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