Practice Context and Levels of Physical Activity in Youth Basketball

Thursday, April 25, 2013
Exhibit Hall Poster Area 2 (Convention Center)
Julio Morales1, Kimberly Gauthreaux1 and Jose A. Santiago2, (1)Lamar University, Beaumont, TX, (2)Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, TX

Background/Purpose As youth sports and athletics continue to grow there is a need to ascertain their contribution to children's levels of physical activity (PA). The purpose of this study was to examine the activities in youth basketball practice and their relationship to levels of moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) in practice.

Method Fourteen practices of boys' teams between the ages of 10-12 participating in a local competitive basketball league were observed using the System for Observing Fitness Instruction Time (SOFIT). Practices were observed by the same trained researcher to assess the intensity and content of practices.

Analysis/Results Since practice times ranged from 50-66 minutes data was converted to percentages for analysis. The majority of practice time spent in skill practice (61.94%), followed by game play (17.52%) with fitness activities being least (0.33%). Most of the time (76.53%) was spent at MVPA. Significant correlations were found between MVPA and game play (.708), between MVPA and knowledge content (-.608); and between skill practice and game play (-.800). Multiple Regression Analysis was used to predict MVPA with significant contributions of Game Play and Skill Practice (R2 = 0.810; SEE = 5.489).

Conclusions These results suggest that appropriate levels of PA were achieved during the majority of practices and that MVPA can be predicted from practice components. However, the negative correlation between some desirable practice components and MVPA, suggest that careful attention has to be paid to practice design in order to achieve appropriate levels of MVPA and develop skill.