Changes in children's sleep and physical activity during a 1-week versus a 3-week break from school: A natural experiment

R. Glenn Weaver, Michael W. Beets, Michelle Perry, Ethan Hunt, Keith Brazendale, Lindsay Decker, Gabrielle Turner-McGrievy, Russell Pate, Shawn Youngstedt, Brian E. Saelens, Alberto Maydeu-Olivares

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

Study Objectives To examine changes in elementary aged children's sleep and physical activity during a 1-week and a 3-week school break. Methods Sleep and physical activity of elementary children (n = 154, age = 5-9 years, 44.8% female, 65.5% African American) were collected over 7 weeks that included a 1-week break in two schools and a 3-week break in a single school. Mixed regression models estimated sleep and physical activity changes within and between groups (i.e. 1-week vs. 3-weeks) during school and school break weeks. Results Compared to school weeks, bed times shifted 72.7 (95% CI = 57.5, 87.9) and 75.4 (95% CI = 58.1, 92.7) minutes later on weekdays during the 1-week and 3-week break, respectively. Wake times shifted 111.6 (95% CI = 94.3, 128.9) and 99.8 (95% CI = 80.5, 119.1) minutes later on weekdays during 1-week and 3-week breaks. On weekdays during the 3-week break, children engaged in 33.1 (95% CI = 14.1, 52.2) more sedentary minutes and -12.2 (-20.2, -4.2) fewer moderate-to-vigorous physical activity minutes/day. No statistically significant changes in children's sedentary, light, or moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) minutes were observed on weekdays during the 1-week break. Between-group differences in the change in time sedentary (32.1 - 95% CI = 5.8, 58.4), and moderate-to-vigorous (-13.0 - 95% CI = -23.9, -2.0) physical activity were observed. Conclusions Children's sleep shifted later on both 1-week and 3-week breaks. Children's activity changed minimally on weekdays during a 1-week school break and more during a 3-week school break. Displaced sleep and reductions in activity are intervention targets for mitigating unhealthy weight gain during extended breaks from school.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberzsy205
JournalSleep
Volume42
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019

Keywords

  • health
  • obesity
  • overweight
  • weight

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Physiology (medical)

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