Abstract MP65: High Mobile Device Usage Associated With Sedentary Behaviors and Less Physical Activity in 6th Grade Students
Background: Sedentary screen time (including TV, computer and video games) has been correlated with childhood obesity and other health risks. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that children limit their daily screen time to two hours in order to reduce the associated risk. Mobile device use has become increasingly popular amongst children and adolescents. However, mobile screen time (cell phone and tablet use) and its effect on physical activity in adolescents has yet to be thoroughly researched.
Methods: Self-reported survey data were collected from 2,566 6th grade students enrolled in Project Healthy Schools during the 2013-2014 school year. Based on AAP guidelines, we split our sample into low mobile device users (≤2 hours/day) and high mobile device users (>2 hours/day). We compared physical activity, sports team participation and screen time habits between groups.
Results: 20.73% (n=532) of the 6th graders surveyed reported being high mobile device users. 60.5% (n=322) of these were female; 39.5% (n=210) were male. In addition to >2 hours/day on a mobile device, these students spent significantly more time watching TV (2.30 v 1.70, p<0.001), on the computer (1.39 v 0.88, p<0.001), and playing video games (1.47 v 1.01, p<0.001) than low mobile device users. Low mobile device users participated in significantly more strengthening exercises (2.80 v 2.62, p=0.046) and outside of school sports teams (1.20 v 1.09, p=0.03) than high mobile device users.
Conclusions: A large percentage of middle school students (20.73%) reported spending more time on a mobile device than recommended by the AAP. High mobile device usage appears to be associated with less physical activity and more sedentary behaviors. This illustrates the need to educate children and encourage the reduction of time spent on a mobile device.
Author Disclosures: L. Gordon: None. R. Sylvester: None. R. Rogers: None. W. Wei: None. A. Pew: None. Q. Jiang: None. E. Kline-Rogers: None. C. Goldberg: None. J. DuRussel-Weston: None. K.A. Eagle: None. E.A. Jackson: None.
- © 2015 by American Heart Association, Inc.