Fitness, fatness, and academic attainment in male schoolchildren from a soccer academy

Souhail Hermassi*, Thomas Bartels, Lawrence D. Hayes, René Schwesig

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

This investigation explored the association between anthropometric measures, fitness, and academic attainment (mathematics and science grade point average [GPA]) in male schoolchildren from a soccer academy. Thirty-one males (age: 10.3 ± 1.19 years; body mass: 41.7 ± 6.5 kg; height: 1.43 ± 0.07 m; body mass index (BMI): 20.2 ± 2.8 kg/m2) participated. Body mass, body fat percentage (%BF), and BMI were used as measures of anthropometry. The Yo-Yo Intermittent Recovery Test (level 1), squat and counter-movement jumps (SJ and CMJ), static balance, 10 and 15 m sprint, and a T-half test for change-of-direction (CoD) performance were used to measure fitness parameters. The GPA of mathematics and science determined academic attainment. All physical performance tests showed excellent relative reliability. ICC was between 0.87 (10 m sprint) and 1.00 (15 m sprint, CMJ). Regarding correlations between fatness and academic attainment, we found three correlations of practical value (r > 0.5), but only for mathematics (BMI: r = 0.540, subscapular skinfold: r = 0.589, body fat: r = 0.560). Mathematics was relevantly correlated with 15 m sprint (r = 0.574) and Yo-Yo IR1 test (r = 0.770). Only static balance (r = 0.428) did not reach the relevance criteria (r > 0.5). Science only showed large correlations with static balance (r = 0.620) and Yo-Yo IR1 test (r = 0.730). In conclusion, fatness and fitness are related to academic attainment in schoolchildren. In addition, except for static balance, all physical performance parameters were relevantly (r > 0.5) correlated with mathematics.
Original languageEnglish
Article number3106
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume19
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 6 Mar 2022

Keywords

  • soccer
  • anthropometrics
  • body fat
  • academic attainment
  • physical fitness
  • GPA

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