Dario Colella, Domenico Monacis, Cristina d’Arando


Physical efficiency is an important health indicator for children and adolescents. The increase in overweight and obesity in childhood is a dangerous determinant of physical fitness development. This study aimed to evaluate and compare motor performances, perceived self-efficacy and enjoyment in relation to BMI in primary school children. The sample consisted of 2,623 children (F: 1,300; M: 1,323) divided into three groups according to gender and BMI differences (Normal-weight vs Over-weight vs Obese). In addition to descriptive statistics (M ± SD), ANOVA 3 (group, normo-weight vs overweight vs obese) was performed x 2 (gender), to highlight differences between groups (p<.05). Physical fitness perceived physical self-efficacy and enjoyment were assessed with motor test (SLJ; 6 MWT; 10x4; MBT) and two self-report questionnaires, i.e. PACES and PPAS_C. Results showed a strong relation between BMI and motor performances, perceived self-efficacy and enjoyment in both males and females. Overweight and obese children showed lower motor performances compared to the Nw group of students (p<.05). Furthermore, the scores of perceived self-efficacy and enjoyment of the Ow-Ob group are lower than those of the Nw group (p<.05). Findings reveals that children perceived self-efficacy and enjoyment are crucial for motor development and promoting active lifestyles.


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physical fitness; obesity; primary school; self-perception; enjoyment

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