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Canadian Physical Activity and Screen Time Guidelines: Do Children Know?

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Objective: Few people are aware of current physical activity (PA), or screen time (ST) guidelines. No study has examined children's awareness. This study examined guideline awareness among Canadian children. Methods: Children (N = 1010, 55% girls) were asked to identify PA and ST guidelines. Behavior also was measured by accelerometry in a subsample of children (N = 223, 61.9% girls). Results: Overall, children knew PA guidelines (71.6%), but not ST guidelines (20.0%). In adjusted models, children's guidelines knowledge did not differ by activity level but showed significant associations between PA, ST, and self-perceptions of PA. Conclusions: Regardless of activity level, children correctly identified current PA guidelines but not ST guidelines. It may be beneficial to create public health policies or interventions to improve guideline awareness.

Keywords: CHILD PHYSICAL ACTIVITY; PHYSICAL ACTIVITY GUIDELINES; SCREEN TIME AND YOUTH; SEDENTARY BEHAVIOR GUIDELINES

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: ParticipACTION, Toronto, ON, Canada

Publication date: September 1, 2016

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  • Health Behavior and Policy Review is a rigorously peer-reviewed scholarly bi-monthly publication that seeks manuscripts on health behavior or policy topics that represent original research, including papers that examine the development, advocacy, implementation, or evaluation of policies around specific health issues. The Review especially welcomes papers that tie together health behavior and policy recommendations. Articles are available through subscription or can be ordered individually from the Health Behavior and Policy Review site.
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