Fundamental movement skills and physical fitness as predictors of physical activity: A 6-year follow-up study

Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2016 Jan;26(1):74-81. doi: 10.1111/sms.12407. Epub 2015 Feb 2.


The purpose of this study was to examine the extent to which fundamental movement skills and physical fitness scores assessed in early adolescence predict self-reported physical activity assessed 6 years later. The sample comprised 333 (200 girls, 133 boys; M age = 12.41) students. The effects of previous physical activity, sex, and body mass index (BMI) were controlled in the main analyses. Adolescents' fundamental movement skills, physical fitness, self-report physical activity, and BMI were collected at baseline, and their self-report energy expenditure (metabolic equivalents: METs) and intensity of physical activity were collected using the International Physical Activity Questionnaire 6 years later. Results showed that fundamental movement skills predicted METs, light, moderate, and vigorous intensity physical activity levels, whereas fitness predicted METs, moderate, and vigorous physical activity levels. Hierarchical regression analyses also showed that after controlling for previous levels of physical activity, sex, and BMI, the size of the effect of fundamental movement skills and physical fitness on energy expenditure and physical activity intensity was moderate (R(2) change between 0.06 and 0.15), with the effect being stronger for high intensity physical activity.

Keywords: Physical activity; adolescence; fundamental movement skills; physical fitness.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Body Mass Index
  • Child
  • Energy Metabolism / physiology*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Forecasting / methods
  • Humans
  • Linear Models
  • Male
  • Motor Activity / physiology*
  • Motor Skills / physiology*
  • Movement / physiology*
  • Physical Fitness / physiology*
  • Self Report
  • Sex Distribution
  • Surveys and Questionnaires