Body composition and cardiorespiratory fitness indicators in prepubescent boys and girls

P. Rump*, W.J.M. Gerver, G. Hornstra

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Nutrition and Toxicology Research Institute Maastricht (NUTRIM), The Netherlands.

Abstract.Relations between frequently used indicators of cardiorespiratory fitness, sex and body composition were studied in a birth-cohort based sample of young prepubescent children (age range: 6.8 - 8.2 years). The Bruce treadmill test was used to assess submaximal heart rate, endurance time (ET), calculated total work (W(total)) and maximal power output (P(max)) in 100 children (50 boys, 50 girls). Body composition was determined by skinfold measurements. In 17 children, maximal oxygen consumption was measured. Percent body fat was negatively associated with ET and relative oxygen uptake (ml x min(-1) x kg(-1)) and was positively related to submaximal heart rate at 6 minutes exercise (HR6). Fat-free mass was positively related to W(total), P(max) and absolute oxygen uptake (ml x min(-1)). Relative oxygen uptake (ml x min(-1) x kg(-1)) was related to ET. Absolute oxygen uptake (ml x min(-1)) was related to W(total) and P(max). The observed differences in indicators of cardiorespiratory fitness between boys and girls were largely attributable to a difference in body composition. The results further demonstrate that when oxygen uptake measurement is not feasible, W(total) or P(max) (expressed per kilogram fat-free mass) seem to provide better indicators of aerobic power than endurance time.

Publication Types:
Clinical Trial
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)50-54
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Sports Medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2002

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