Micky Oloo Olutende, Maximilla N. Wanzala, Anthony Muchiri Wangui, Edwin Kadima Wamukoya


The aim of this investigation was to compare anthropometric, blood pressure phenotypes and bio-motor variables between sports and non-sports university students aged 21.4 ± 2.1 years (mean ± s) and also to study the discriminating power of selected anthropometric and bio-motor variables among university students in the two groups (sports n=119 and non-sports n=166) in Kenya. A cross-Sectional analytical study design was used in the study. University students randomly selected in both groups (n = 285) volunteered as subjects. Anthropometric parameters assessed included body mass, height, and body fat percentage. The bio-motor variables assessed included upper body endurance and abdominal endurance. Blood pressure phenotypes assessed included pulse rate and mean arterial blood pressure which was computed from systolic and diastolic blood pressures. Multivariate analysis of covariance (MANCOVA) and Linear discriminant analysis (LDA) were used for analysis in Statistical packages for social science version 25. The results showed that the non-sports group had a numerically high BMI and body fat percentage (23.4; 22.2) compared to the sports group (19.8; 17.5). With regards to blood pressure, the mean arterial blood pressure and pulse rate of the non-sports group was high (87.9; 83.3) compared to the sports group (85.9; 75.2). The multivariate test of differences in groups as a result of the linear combination of all predictor variables showed that the mean vectors for the two groups were significant for groups (Pillai’s T, P<0.01) but not for the covariate Age (Pillai’s T, P=.149). Results for the individual test of differences in adjusted means (marginal means) showed that there were statistically significant differences adjusted for age between the sports and non-sports groups in all dependent variables(p<0.05) except Mean arterial blood pressure (f (2,282) =.988, p=.321). Results from the LDA yielded only one significant function and all six variables significantly contributed to the discriminant analysis (Wilks A = 0.639, x2 = 125.34, df=6, p < 0.01, R2 = .36). The structure coefficients of all variables were greater than 0.25. The original classification summary showed that 81.8% of the cases were correctly classified in their respective group. In conclusion, the anthropometric, bio-motor and blood pressure phenotypes of sports students were significantly different from non-sports students. The study recommended that well-planned programs of physical and mental health should be initiated in all educational institutes.


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athletes, non-athletes, anthropometric indices, body fat percentage, body composition, linear discriminant analysis (LDA), anthropometric, bio-motor, kinanthropometry, multivariate analysis of covariance (MANOVA), Kenya

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