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Physical activity levels of children with autism spectrum disorder

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dc.contributor.advisor Yun, Joonkoo
dc.creator Johnson, Courtney P.
dc.date.accessioned 2012-06-27T21:27:20Z
dc.date.available 2012-06-27T21:27:20Z
dc.date.copyright 2012-06-08
dc.date.issued 2012-06-08
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/1957/30279
dc.description Graduation date: 2013 en_US
dc.description.abstract The low physical activity levels of children today are a cause for serious concern. When examining certain populations of children, such as children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), there is a possibility of even lower overall physical activity levels. However, when exploring the current literature examining the physical activity levels of children with ASD compared to children without ASD there were conflicting results. Some studies indicate that the physical activity levels between children with ASD and children without ASD are similar. Others indicate that children with ASD were less active than their counterparts. Although many of the previous studies employed sound protocol designs including using objective measures for physical activity, these studies did not appropriately match the groups. A child's environment is one of the determining factors of their overall physical activity levels. Current literature indicates that parents have a significant influence on the physical activity levels of their children. In order to accurately compare the levels of physical activity between children with ASD and without ASD, using appropriate matching groups is crucial. The purpose of this study was to examine the current physical activity levels of children with ASD by matching groups based on similar environments and parental influences. A total of 16 children (8 pairs of siblings) participated in this study. Physical activity levels were examined by the activity counts using accelerometers, evaluating time spent in moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA), and determining if children with ASD met the physical activity recommendations more or less than their siblings. Results indicate no difference in daily physical activity levels and time spent in MVPA were found between siblings. A total of 5 of the 16 children met the recommended amount of physical activity. Only 3 out of the 8 children with ASD met the recommended amount of physical activity. This stresses their time spent in MVPA should be an area of concern for all children and interventions should attempt to increase their MVPA early on. In conclusion, children with ASD were no less active than children without disabilities; however the children are not meeting the current physical activity recommendations. This study also suggests that for children with ASD, it may not be the condition that limits their physical activity, but instead the environmental factors may influence their activity levels. en_US
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.subject Autism Spectrum Disoder en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Children with autism spectrum disorders en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Exercise for children
dc.title Physical activity levels of children with autism spectrum disorder en_US
dc.type Thesis/Dissertation en_US
dc.degree.name Master of Science (M.S.) in Exercise and Sport Science en_US
dc.degree.level Master's en_US
dc.degree.discipline Health and Human Sciences en_US
dc.degree.grantor Oregon State University en_US
dc.contributor.committeemember MacDonald, Megan
dc.contributor.committeemember Driver, Simon
dc.contributor.committeemember Levien, Keith
dc.description.peerreview no en_us

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