Publication Date

2016

Abstract

Objective: To examine the association of maternal physical activity before and during pregnancy with academic performance in youth. Methods: This study included 1868 youth (6–18 years) and their mothers. Mothers recalled their physical activity before and during pregnancy. Mothers were categorized into four groups: “remained active”, “became inactive”, “became active” and “remained inactive”. Academic performance was assessed through school records. Results: Boys whose mothers practiced physical activity before or during pregnancy had significantly higher scores in academic performance indicators independently of physical activity, fitness, current body mass index (BMI) and birthweight than those whose mothers did not practice physical activity before or during pregnancy (all p  <  0.05). In addition, boys whose mothers remained active had higher scores in all academic indicators (ranging from +0.358 to +0.543) than boys whose mothers remained inactive. Boys whose mothers remained active had higher scores in Language (score +0.546; 95% CI, 0.150–0.940), average of Math and Language (score +0.468; 95% CI, 0.100–0.836) and grade point average (GPA) (score +0.368; 95% CI, 0.092–0.644) than boys whose mothers became active. Conclusions: Maternal physical activity before and during pregnancy may positively influence youth's academic performance. Continuing maternal physical activity practice during pregnancy may have greater benefits for youth's academic performance.

School/Institute

Institute for Health and Ageing

Document Type

Journal Article

Access Rights

ERA Access

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