B3698 - Longitudinal associations between physical activity and sleep in early adolescence - 20/01/2021

B number: 
Principal applicant name: 
Dr. Russell Pate | University of South Carolina (United States of America)
Agnes Bucko, MS
Title of project: 
Longitudinal associations between physical activity and sleep in early adolescence
Proposal summary: 

Meeting physical activity, sleep and sedentary behavior guidelines is associated with better cardiometabolic health and adiposity outcomes among children and youth. Unfortunately, recent estimates suggest that only 25.4% of adolescents in the US meet sleep guidelines, 26.1% meet physical activity guidelines, and only 5% meet guidelines for sleep, physical activity and sedentary behavior. Although some evidence indicates that there is a positive association between physical activity levels and sleep duration, findings among children and adolescents are not consistent and are limited by a predominantly cross-sectional study design. Although low income and minority youth are at a higher risk of not meeting both sleep and physical activity recommendations, it is unclear whether the sleep and physical activity relationship varies by racial, ethnic or socioeconomic group. Furthermore, exercise intensity appears to have a strong, positive relationship with sleep, although more research is needed to determine whether exercise at a light or moderate intensities can lead to improvements in sleep outcomes. This study aims to examine the association between physical activity and sedentary behavior, measured objectively at 11, 13 and 15 years of age, with subjectively-measured sleep at age 15. Furthermore, this study aims to understand whether the sleep and physical activity relationship varies by demographic characteristics and measures of adiposity.

Impact of research: 
This project is significant because it will utilize a longitudinal study design to assess the relationship between sleep and physical activity, which will aid in understanding whether physical activity interventions can be utilized to improve sleep outcomes in adolescents. Furthermore, this study will expand our knowledge on the association between sleep and sedentary behavior. Although some research supports an inverse association between sleep and sedentary behavior, the lack of longitudinal studies on this association makes it difficult to discern whether sedentary behavior has a negative effect on sleep outcomes, or if children who are poorer sleepers are less active as a result of increased tiredness during the day. This study will go beyond current research addressing the sleep and physical activity/sedentary behavior relationship by assessing sleep quality, and not just sleep duration, and will consider whether these associations vary by different demographic characteristics.
Date proposal received: 
Tuesday, 12 January, 2021
Date proposal approved: 
Wednesday, 20 January, 2021
Exercise Science , Behaviour - e.g. antisocial behaviour, risk behaviour, etc., Statistical methods, Physical - activity, fitness, function