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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/13541

Title: Physical fitness and cognitive function among school–aged children in selected basic schools in the Ho Municipality of Ghana
Authors: Amenya, Priscilla Cecilia Akpene
Annan, Reginald Adjetey
Apprey, Charles
Kpewou, Daniel Edem
Keywords: Physical fitness
Academic performance
School-aged children
Issue Date: 2021
Publisher: Heliyon
Citation: Heliyon 7 (2021) e06324
Abstract: Physical fitness is thought to promote cognitive function. Evidence about this is however lacking in the Ghanaian context. This study aimed to investigate the association between physical fitness and cognitive function among basic school children aged 8–13 years. A cross-sectional study involving 591 school children, recruited from 12 randomly selected public and private basic schools was conducted. Physical fitness tests were done using a fivetest battery (Fifty metre run, handgrip strength, sit-up, flexibility and standing board jump) following standardized procedures. Cognitive function test using the Raven's Coloured Progressive Matrices (RCPM) were carried out. More girls (55%), children from 8-13 years old (49.1%) and public school children (66.1%) participated in the study. For fitness, boys performed better than girls in sit ups 3.4 2.2 (mean SD), p ¼ 0.012, handgrip 4.3 2.0, p ¼ 0.001 and overall fitness 4.3 2.0, p ¼ 0.007. Children in public schools performed significantly better in forward jump (p < 0.001) while those in private schools did better in 50m run (p < 0.001). For cognition, 46.1% of participants had less than 50% of the total score. Cognitive test score varied for forward jump and handgrip alone and not for sit ups, 50m run and overall score. Mean forward jump score was lowest in poor cognition group (4.9 2.3), followed by good (5.3 2.2) and highest among excellent (5.5 2.3, p ¼ 0.044) cognition group. Similar observation was made for handgrip. Cognition score and hand grip strength were positively but weakly correlated. (r ¼ 0.132, p ¼ 0.026). Although handgrip strength (measuring muscular strength) was significantly associated with cognitive function, this study found no significant association between overall physical fitness and cognitive function. These results indicate that only some components of physical fitness may be associated with cognitive function. This study is however correlational and one cannot infer causality.
Description: An article published in Heliyon 7 (2021) e06324
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/13541
Appears in Collections:College of Science

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