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Socioeconomic and developmental factors from early life and leisure-time physical activity across adulthood

Elhakeem, AI; (2017) Socioeconomic and developmental factors from early life and leisure-time physical activity across adulthood. Doctoral thesis, UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

Leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) benefits heath therefore, it is important to understand which factors might influence LTPA. Studies link early life factors with adult health and behaviours but their associations, particularly developmental factors, with LTPA are unclear. Further, examining if associations found change with age may shed light on underlying mechanisms. The aim of this thesis was to examine associations of socioeconomic and developmental factors from early life with LTPA across adulthood. Published studies were systematically reviewed to examine associations between childhood socioeconomic position (SEP) and adult LTPA. Remaining objectives were addressed using data from up to 3545 participants from the MRC National Survey of Health and Development (NSHD). Prospectively collected data from early life used in analyses were birth weight, infant motor milestones, ability at school games, upper and lower limb motor coordination and pubertal development. LTPA was self-reported five times between ages 36 and 68. Associations were examined using standard and mixed-effects binary and multinomial logistic regression. Age by early life factor interactions tested if associations varied by age at assessment of LTPA. Among 36 published studies identified, lower childhood SEP (most commonly indicated by parental occupation and education) was associated with less LTPA in adulthood (particularly among women and in UK cohorts) but there was considerable heterogeneity between studies. In the NSHD, low birth weight, lower ability at games and slower tapping speed in adolescence were associated with lower likelihood of participation in LTPA across adulthood and these associations did not vary by age. There was some suggestion that early maturing boys and later maturing girls were more likely to participate in LTPA in adulthood but this evidence was weak. Socioeconomic and developmental factors from early life were associated with LTPA across adulthood. The main implications of these findings are that those with low birth weight, less motor competence and lower SEP may require additional support to take up and maintain LTPA across adulthood.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: Socioeconomic and developmental factors from early life and leisure-time physical activity across adulthood
Event: UCL (University College London)
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health Care
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1563581
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