The six-minute walk test is a well-established submaximal exercise reflecting the functional status and the clinical severity of sickle cell patients. The aim of the present cross-sectional study was to investigate the biological determinants of the six-minute walk test performance in children with sickle cell anemia. Hematological and hemorheological parameters, pulmonary function and the six-minute walk test performance were determined in 42 children with sickle cell anemia at steady state. The performance during the six-minute walk test was normalized for age, sex and height and expressed as percentage of the predicted six-minute walk distance. We showed that a high level of anemia, a low fetal hemoglobin expression and low red blood cell deformability were independent predictors of a low six-minute walk test performance. This study describes for the first time the impact of blood rheology in the six-minute walk test performance in children with sickle cell anemia.