Sports camp with six months of support from a local sports club as a treatment of childhood obesity.

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AIMS: Although childhood obesity is becoming increasingly prevalent, treatment options are limited and the continued development of effective treatment strategies is necessary. It is equally important to explore involvement of other resources in society, such as sports associations. This study was designed to investigate the possibility of reducing the degree of obesity in obese children by focusing on physical activity as an intervention. METHODS: Seventy-six children (40 boys) aged 8-12 years (mean age 10.5 years, mean body mass index (BMI) 28.9, standard deviation (SD) 3.0; mean BMI z-score 3.24, SD 0.49) were invited to participate in a one-week sports camp and six-month support system. After the camp a sports coach from a local sports club supported the child during participation in a chosen sport for six months. Weight, height, body composition (using dual energy x-ray absorptiometry and magnetic resonance imaging), and lifestyle (using a questionnaire) were measured at baseline and after 12 months. Data were pooled from two camps, one with a self-selected control group and one randomized controlled trial. RESULTS: Twelve months after the camp the intervention group had a significant decrease in BMI z-score (baseline BMI z-score 3.22; follow up 3.10, p = 0.023). The control group also reduced their BMI z-score (baseline BMI z-score 3.27; follow up 3.18, p = 0.022). No differences were found in baseline values, follow-up values, or changes in BMI z-score between groups, nor between boys and girls. CONCLUSIONS: The focus on physical activity as an intervention had no effect on degree of obesity when compared with a waiting list control group.


  • Paulina Nowicka
  • Jan Lanke
  • Angelo Pietrobelli
  • Erwin Apitzsch
  • Carl-Erik Flodmark
Enheter & grupper

Ämnesklassifikation (UKÄ) – OBLIGATORISK

  • Folkhälsovetenskap, global hälsa, socialmedicin och epidemiologi
Sidor (från-till)793-800
TidskriftScandinavian Journal of Public Health
StatusPublished - 2009
Peer review utfördJa