Evolution of maximal oxygen uptake in children

Med Sport Sci. 2007;50:200-209. doi: 10.1159/000101392.


Evidence exists that physiologic aerobic fitness, defined by maximal oxygen uptake related to body mass (VO2 x kg-1), bears health implications for children as well as adults. Identifying secular trends in VO2max x kg-1 is important, then, in assessing the impact of socio-cultural influences on aerobic fitness in youth. At present, no data exist to provide a population-based indication of secular trends in VO2max in young persons. However, based on documented temporal changes in childhood obesity and physical activity levels, it can be anticipated that a decline of VO2max x kg-1 is occurring over time. This fall would be more likely due to increases in body fat in youth, inflating the size-normalizing factor ('per kg'), rather than a temporal deterioration in cardiovascular function per se.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Age Factors
  • Body Mass Index
  • Child
  • Child Welfare*
  • Exercise / physiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Motor Activity
  • Oxygen Consumption / physiology*
  • Physical Fitness / physiology*