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Metabolic rate and clothing insulation data of children and adolescents during various school activities

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Data on metabolic rates (n = 81) and clothing insulation (n = 96) of school children and adolescents (A, primary school: age 9-10; B, primary school: age 10-11 year; C, junior vocational (technical) education: age 13-16 (lower level); D, same as C but at advanced level; and E, senior vocational (technical) education, advanced level: age 16-18) were collected (Diaferometer, Oxylog, Heart Rate derivation) during theory-, practical- and physical education- lessons. Clothing insulation was calculated from clothing weight, covered body surface area, and the number of clothing layers worn. Clothing insulation was found to be similar to that expected for adults in the same (winter) season, with minimal variation with age or school type (0.9 to 1.0 clo; 1.38 clo where coverall was worn), but more variation within groups (coefficient of variation 6-12%). Metabolic rate values (W.m-2) were lower than expected from adult data for similar activities, but are supported by other child data. The results of this study can be used to establish design criteria for school climate control systems or as general data on energy expenditure for children and adolescents. The results emphasize the need for specific child data and show the limited value of size-corrected adult data for use in children.
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Keywords: Children; Climate assessment; Energy expenditure; Metabolism; Oxygen uptake; School, clothing insulation

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: TNO Human Factors, Loughborough, UK

Publication date: October 1, 2007

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