Advanced Pubertal Status at Age 11 and Lower Physical Activity in Adolescent Girls

Department of Recreation, Park, and Tourism Management, Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA, USA.
The Journal of pediatrics (Impact Factor: 3.79). 12/2007; 151(5):488-93. DOI: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2007.04.017
Source: PubMed


To examine the relationship between pubertal timing and physical activity.
A longitudinal sample of 143 adolescent girls was assessed at ages 11 and 13 years. Girls' pubertal development was assessed at age 11 with blood estradiol levels, Tanner breast staging criteria, and parental report of pubertal development. Girls were classified as early maturers (n = 41) or later maturers (n = 102) on the basis of their scores on the 3 pubertal development measures. Dependent variables measured at age 13 were average minutes/day of moderate to vigorous and vigorous physical activity as measured by the ActiGraph accelerometer.
Early-maturing girls had significantly lower self-reported physical activity and accumulated fewer minutes of moderate to vigorous and vigorous physical activity and accelerometer counts per day at age 13 than later maturing girls. These effects were independent of differences in percentage body fat and self-reported physical activity at age 11.
Girls experiencing early pubertal maturation at age 11 reported lower subsequent physical activity at age 13 than their later maturing peers. Pubertal maturation, in particular early maturation relative to peers, may lead to declines in physical activity among adolescent girls.

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Available from: Kirsten K Davison, Mar 12, 2014
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    • "Ours is the only study that has used serial measures of menarchal status to categorise girls into relative maturity groups. Others have used recalled age of menarche (Sherar et al., 2009), Pubertal Development Scale (van Jaarsveld et al., 2007), estimated age at peak height velocity (Sherar et al., 2009; Wickel & Eisenmann, 2007; Wickel et al., 2009) and blood oestradiol and tanner staging combined (Baker et al., 2007). Interestingly though, each of these latter studies presented data in which the group of relatively more mature girls were marginally more active than the less mature girls (albeit differences did not achieve significance). "
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    ABSTRACT: Abstract The aim of this study was to adopt a longitudinal design to explore the direct effects of both absolute and relative maturation and changes in body size on physical activity, and explore if, and how, physical self-perceptions might mediate this effect. We recruited 208 girls (11.8 ± 0.4 years) at baseline. Data were collected at three subsequent time points, each 6 months apart. At 18 months, 119 girls remained in the study. At each time point, girls completed the Physical Activity Questionnaire for Children, the Pubertal Development Scale (from which, both a measure of relative and absolute maturation were defined) and the Physical Self-Perception Profile, and had physical size characteristics assessed. Multilevel modelling for physical activity indicated a significant negative effect of age, positive effect for physical condition and sport competence and positive association for relatively early maturers. Absolute maturation, body mass, waist circumference and sum of skinfolds did not significantly contribute to the model. Contrary to common hypotheses, relatively more mature girls may, in fact, be more active than their less mature peers. However, neither changes in absolute maturation nor physical size appear to directly influence changes in physical activity in adolescent girls.
    Journal of Sports Sciences 09/2013; 32(4). DOI:10.1080/02640414.2013.825733 · 2.25 Impact Factor
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    • "In addition to controlling for age, analyses were stratified by sex to mitigate confounding by pubertal maturation because puberty begins and ends earlier in girls than in boys [24] and almost all girls are post pubescent by age 15 years [27]. Moreover, the follow-up time was divided into two periods, corresponding to earlier adolescence (mean age, 12.8 and 12.7 years at baseline) and later adolescence (mean age 15.2 and 15.1 years at baseline), in boys and girls, respectively, to increase the likelihood that findings from earlier adolescence in boys and those from later adolescence in girls would be less confounded by puberty. "
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    ABSTRACT: Findings from prospective studies on associations between physical activity and adiposity among youth are inconsistent. Our aim was to describe physical activity trajectories during secondary school and examine the association with change in adiposity in youth. Physical activity was measured in 20 survey cycles from 1999 to 2005; anthropometrics were measured in survey cycles 1, 12, and 19. Individual growth curves modeling moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and vigorous physical activity (VPA) were estimated. Estimates of initial level and rate of decline in MVPA and VPA bouts per week were included as potential predictors of body fat% and body mass index using age- and sex-specific linear regression. Complete data were available for 840 and 760 adolescents aged 12-13 years at baseline, followed from survey cycles 1-12 and 12-19, respectively. Among girls, yearly declines of one MVPA and one VPA bout per week during earlier adolescence were associated with increases of 0.19 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.02-0.36) and 0.47 (95% CI, 0.015-0.92) units of body fat%, respectively. In boys, a yearly decline of one MVPA bout per week was associated with an increase of 0.38 (95% CI, 0.05-0.70) units of body fat% during later adolescence. Obesity prevention programs should include strategies to prevent declines in physical activity.
    Annals of epidemiology 09/2013; 23(9):529-33. DOI:10.1016/j.annepidem.2013.07.004 · 2.00 Impact Factor
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    • "The body was used to demonstrate ability, used to gain social acceptance through its appearance, shape and size and at times, dictated PA choices and behaviours. Previous quantitative work (Baker et al. 2007, Knowles et al. 2009, Rodrigues et al. 2010) has shown the physical changes during adolescence to be associated with PA behaviour; yet, this has only been considered in the physical form. This study adds to our understanding of the importance of the embodiment transition in shaping the girls' sense of identity towards a stereotypical feminine identity rather than an active identity where PA is embedded into who you are and how you are viewed by others. "
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    ABSTRACT: In this article, we adopted a narrative approach to understand the decrease in physical activity (PA) behaviour in adolescent girls during the transition from primary to secondary school in relation to their socio-cultural and embodied/ physical experiences. Fourteen adolescent girls were asked to tell their PA stories from their past whilst at primary school through to the present day whilst in secondary school. We adopted the analytical standpoint of a story analyst where the girls’ stories were used to examine the psychological processes that occur within the socio-cultural transition of their school environment and the embodiment transition from a child into a young woman. Our findings emphasised that the arena of physical education lessons provide a backdrop for a different identity (active identity) to be developed which contradicted with the socially acceptable stereotypical feminine identity. These competing identities for adolescent girls created narrative tension and enhanced psychological processes such as perceived competence and self-presentation. These were further shaped by the embodiment transition experienced. Important acknowledgement of the body as more than in its physical form needs to be understood as for many of these adolescent girls, the body held more meaning in their stories and influenced PA choices and behaviour.
    Qualitative Research in Sport and Exercise 02/2013; 6(1). DOI:10.1080/2159676X.2013.766816
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