Physical fitness and future cardiovascular risk among the Nasa Indian community from Cauca, Colombia

Robinson Ramírez-Vélez, Jeison Alexander Ramos-Sepúlveda

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Objective: Substantial evidence indicates that children's physical fitness levels are markers of their lifestyles and their cardio-metabolic health profile and are predictors of future risk of chronic diseases. Fitness reference values for ethnic children and adolescents have not been published in a Latin-American population. Therefore, the aim of this study was to establish the proportion of subjects whose aerobic capacity is indicative of future cardiovascular risk.

    Methods: A sample of 576 participants (319 boys and 257 girls) aged 10–17 y was assessed using the ALPHA test battery. Four components of physical fitness were measured: 1) morphological component: height, weight, body mass index (BMI), waist circumference, triceps skinfold, subscapular skinfold, and body fat (%); 2) musculoskeletal component: handgrip and standing long jump test; 3) motor component: speed/agility test (4x10 m shuttle run); and 4) cardiorespiratory component: course-navette 20 m, shuttle run test and estimation of maximal oxygen consumption by VO2max indirect. Centile smoothed curves for the 3rd, 10th, 25th, 50th, 75th, 90th, and 97th percentiles were calculated using Cole's LMS method.

    Results: These results showed that the boys performed better than the girls in speed, lower- and upper-limb strength and cardiorespiratory fitness. The proportion of subjects with an aerobic capacity indicative of future cardiovascular risk was 7.3%. By sex, 3.8% of boys and 11.7% of girls (X2 p = 0.001) displayed an unhealthy aerobic capacity in this study.

    Conclusion: Our results provide for the first time sex- and age-specific physical fitness reference values for Colombian Nasa Indian children and adolescents aged 10–17.9 y.
    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)91-92
    Number of pages1
    JournalAdvances in nutrition (Bethesda, Md.)
    Issue number1
    StatePublished - Jan 2015


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