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International Journal of Pediatrics
Volume 2010 (2010), Article ID 468526, 9 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2010/468526
Research Article

Parental Influence on Young Children's Physical Activity

1Department of Human Kinetics, Laurentian University, Sundbury, ON, Canada P3E 2C6
2Department of Psychology/School of Medicine, Laurentian University, Ramsey Lake Road, Sudbury, ON, Canada P3E 2C6
3Department of Psychology, Laurentian University, Sundbury, ON, Canada P3E 2C6
4Department of Human Kinetics/School of Medicine, Laurentian University, Sundbury, ON, Canada P3E 2C6

Received 8 January 2010; Revised 31 March 2010; Accepted 3 June 2010

Academic Editor: Neil Armstrong

Copyright © 2010 Cheryl A. Zecevic et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Parents influence on their young children's physical activity (PA) behaviours was examined in a sample of 102 preschool-aged children (54 boys). Questionnaires regarding family sociodemographics and physical activity habits were completed. Results showed that children who received greater parental support for activity ( 𝐵 = . 7 8 , 𝑃 < . 1 0 ) and had parents who rated PA as highly enjoyable ( 𝐵 = . 6 9 , 𝑃 < . 0 5 ) were significantly more likely to engage in one hour or more of daily PA. Being an older child ( 𝐵 = . 0 8 , 𝑃 < . 0 1 ), having older parents ( 𝐵 = . 2 6 , 𝑃 < . 0 1 ), and watching more than one hour of television/videos per day ( 𝐵 = 1 . 5 5 , 𝑃 < . 0 1 ) reduced the likelihood that a child would be rated as highly active. Children who received greater parental support for PA were 6.3 times more likely to be highly active than inactive ( 𝐵 = 1 . 4 4 , 𝑃 < . 0 5 ). Thus, parents can promote PA among their preschoolers, not only by limiting TV time but also by being highly supportive of their children's active pursuits.