Establishing normative reference values for the 20-meter shuttle-run test among schoolchildren in Bogota, Colombia

Robinson Ramírez-Vélez, JE Correa-Bautista, cayo adalberto palacios lopez, Katherine Gonz??lez-Ru??z, Cindy Lorena Benavides Rodriguez , Diana Lorena Camelo Prieto

Research output: Contribution to journalResearch Articlepeer-review


PURPOSE: There is increasing evidence that cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) is an important health marker in youth. CRF values for children and adolescents from different countries have been published, but there is a scarcity of reference values for Latin American children and adolescents using recommended CRF estimation field tests such as the 20-m shuttle-run test as evidence of CRF in Colombian schoolchildren. In addition to presenting normative reference values, we also aim to establish the proportion of subjects whose aerobic capacity is indicative of future cardiovascular risk.

METHODS: A total of 7244 children and adolescents (55.7% girls, with a sample age range of 9-17.9 years) completed the 20 m shuttle-run test (median age, in years = 12.8 (SD 2.3); 25th-75th percentile: 11.0-15.0. We expressed performance as the number of shuttle-runs completed and the estimated peak oxygen consumption (VO2peak). Smoothed percentile curves and tables for the 3rd, 10th, 25th, 50th, 75th, 90th and 97th percentiles were calculated using Cole’s LMS method. In addition, we calculated the number of participants who fell below proposed cut-offs for low CRF based on either completed shuttle-runs or by VO2peak.

RESULTS: In general CRF levels increased with age. Among boys CRF, where higher between the ages of 14 and 17 and in girls between the ages of 12 and 14, but this increase was more modest. Shuttles and VO2peak were higher in boys than in girls in all age-specific groups. The proportion of subjects with a CRF indicative of future cardiovascular risk was 11.5%. By sex, 9.65% of boys and 13.1% of girls (X2 p < .001) displayed an unhealthy aerobic capacity in this study.

CONCLUSIONS: Our results provide reference standards for sex- and age-specific twenty- meter shuttle-run test scores and VO2peak values in Colombian schoolchildren aged 9-17.9 years for the first time. These values are particularly important in public health and educational settings, and future research should establish a cut-off value for test performance that can predict present or future ill health.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)777-778
Number of pages1
JournalMedicine and Science in Sports and Exercise
Issue number5S
StatePublished - May 2016


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