Journal of Physical Activity Research
ISSN (Print): 2576-1919 ISSN (Online): 2574-4437 Website: Editor-in-chief: Peter Hart
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Journal of Physical Activity Research. 2021, 6(2), 93-100
DOI: 10.12691/jpar-6-2-4
Open AccessArticle

Maternal Education Level but not Physical Activity in Pregnancy was Associated with Fitness and Fatness in Childhood

Konstantinos D. Tambalis1, 2, and Labros S. Sidossis1, 3

1Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Harokopio University, Athens, Greece

2Department of Physical Education and Sport Science, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece

3Department of Kinesiology and Health, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ 08901, USA

Pub. Date: August 30, 2021

Cite this paper:
Konstantinos D. Tambalis and Labros S. Sidossis. Maternal Education Level but not Physical Activity in Pregnancy was Associated with Fitness and Fatness in Childhood. Journal of Physical Activity Research. 2021; 6(2):93-100. doi: 10.12691/jpar-6-2-4


The aim was to investigate the association between parental education level and physical activity (PA) in pregnancy with offspring’s physical fitness (PF) and obesity status in childhood considered several covariates. Population-based data were obtained from a national database that included anthropometric and PF (cardiorespiratory fitness, speed, and body strength) data of almost all Greek children 8 to 9 years. Α random sample of 5,125 dyads of mothers-children was evaluated. Telephone interviews were carried out with the use of a standardized questionnaire for the collection of maternal lifestyle factors. Children whose mothers had secondary/tertiary educational levels had higher odds of overweight/obesity by 30% in boys and 44% in girls and increased odds for low performances in CRF and upper body explosive strength tests, in boys (OR=1.73, 95%CI: 1.24-1.43 and OR=1.29, 95%CI: 1.07-1.72, respectively) and girls (OR=1.62, 95%CI: 1.15-2.27 and OR=1.73, 95%CI: 1.23-2.25, respectively) than their peers with mothers of basic educational level. Maternal PA levels in pregnancy did not found to significantly associate either to child’s obesity status neither to PF. Considerable variation in BMI and PF status in association with maternal education has been demonstrated, but no association was found for PA in pregnancy.

physical activity education pregnancy physical fitness childhood

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