Relationship between cognitive functioning and physical fitness in regard to age and sex
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D2 attention testAttentionConcentrationPhysical fitnessCognitiveSports activity
González-Fernández et al. Relationship between cognitive functioning and physical fitness in regard to age and sex. BMC Pediatrics (2023) 23:204 [https://doi.org/10.1186/s12887-023-04028-8]
The aim of this study was to analyze the relationships among physical cognitive ability, academic performance, and physical fitness regarding age and sex in a group of 187 students (53.48% male, 46.52% female) from one town of Norwest of Jaen, Andalusia (Spain), aged between 9 and 15 years old (M = 11.97, SD = 1.99). The D2 attention test was used in order to analyze selective attention and concentration. Physical fitness, reflected on maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max), was evaluated using the 6 min Walking Test (6MWT). The analysis taken indicated a significant relationship between physical fitness level, attention, and concentration, as in the general sample looking at sex (finding differences between boys and girls in some DA score in almost all age categories [p < 0.05]) and at age category (finding some differences between the younger age category groups and the older age category groups in some DA scores (p < 0.05), not finding any significant interaction between sex and age category (p > 0.05). In sum, the present study revealed that students with better aerobic fitness can present better-processed elements and smaller omission errors. Moreover, girls and older students seem to present better cognitive functioning scores than boys and younger. Our findings suggest that more research is necessary to elucidate the cognitive function between ages, sexes, and physical fitness and anthropometry levels of students.