Symposium 1

CONTEMPORARY STRATEGIES TO ENHANCE HEALTH AND WELLBEING AMONG CHILDREN AND YOUTHS

This symposium entitled ‘Contemporary strategies to enhance health and wellbeing among children and youths’, focuses on various approaches in promoting health and wellbeing of children and youths. Five international presenters from United Kingdom, Brazil, USA, Costa Rica and Malaysia will present topics in the areas of:1) Energy availability in professional female football players. The presenter will present the current literature that is available on energy availability in female football players, along with the possible risk factors of reduced or low energy availability. It will also highlight practical solutions for monitoring energy availability in team sport athletes; 2) Physical education, well-being and health among Brazilian children during the social distancing periodThis presentation will focus on the best practices in promoting well-being and health among Brazilian children through physical education, during the social distancing period, caused by COVID-19 pandemic. The variables which will be addressed are socioeconomic context in Brazil, access and use of technology resources, level of health literacy, and the United Nations agenda for sustainable development; 3) Using online learning to safely and cost-effectively disseminate nutrition, physical activity and healthy living content to children and their families. This presentation highlights the evidence-based approach to the global health crisis combined with a replicable model utilizing technology for dissemination and implementation. The research presented is published in top-tier journals and show statistically significant improvements in children’s BMI percentiles, waist circumference, blood pressure and standardized test scores; 4) School-based physical activity program to promote health and fitness for children in Costa Rica. This presentation will focus on  the effect of a school-based physical activity program on health and fitness in two hundred twenty-seven children. The school-based physical activity program (Active Flag Program) consisted of the implementation of a model in which a series of directed physical activity routines were designed by a physical education teacher and executed daily basis during the five school days, 15 minutes per day at a low and moderate intensity. The physical activity routines were carried out by all students as well as school staff, officials, and parents who were invited to participate in the schoolyard. The Active Flag Program also contemplated the design and application of some complementary actions aimed at promoting healthy lifestyles; 5) Influence of physical activity on bone health status and physical fitness components in young population: A Malaysian perspective. This presentation will firstly focus on the relationships between physical activity, bone health and muscular strength. Evidences of influence of sports participation on bone health status and physical fitness components in Malaysian adolescent athletes involved in different types of sports will be presented.

Chairperson and Presenter

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Foong Kiew OOI
Programme Chairman,
Exercise and Sports Science Programme,
School of Health Sciences
Universiti Sains Malaysia
Malaysia.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Foong Kiew Ooi is currently the programme chairman and lecturer in the Exercise and Sports Science Programme, School of Health Sciences, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Malaysia. Dr. Ooi obtained her Bachelor of Education in Physical Education from Universiti Putra Malaysia in 1991, Masters of Science in Sports Science and Doctor of Philosophy in Sports Science from Universiti Sains Malaysia in 2001 and 2007 respectively. She has collaborated with other international universities as a visiting scholar since 2001. She was a research fellow in Hong Kong Institute of Education, Hong Kong in 2001. She had carried out collaborative research on bone health with Chukyo University, Japan in 2003 and 2004 and subsequently with the Department of Orthopaedic and Traumatology, Faculty of Medicine, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong in 2009 and 2010. She was a visiting research fellow in the University of Essex, England in 2014 and 2015. Her research interests include exercise physiology, nutritional supplementation and sports performance, combined effects of nutritional supplementation and exercise on bone health and selected physiological parameters, physiological profiles of athletes, and genetics and sports performance. She has been invited as a speaker in Malaysia, and international conferences held in Indonesia, Taiwan, India, Korea and Philippines. Many of her research work have been published in international peer-reviewed journals.

Influence of Physical Activity on Bone Health Status and Physical Fitness Components in Young Population: A Malaysian Perspective

Sports participation by performing regular weight bearing exercises has been shown to maintain or enhance bone health status. It is believed that early intervention of physical activity in childhood and adolescence plays an important role in enhancing and maintaining bone health during early life and reducing osteoporotic fractures in old age. Physical fitness can be divided into two components, which are health related fitness and skill related fitness. Active engagement in sports is well-documented to elicit beneficial effects on various physical fitness components.This invited lecture will firstly focus on the relationships between physical activity, bone health and muscular strength. Evidences of influence of sports participation on bone health status and physical fitness components in Malaysian adolescent athletes involved in different types of sports will be presented. Physical fitness components such as aerobic capacity, Wingate anaerobic capacity, isokinetic muscular strength and power, hand-grip strength, back and leg strength, leg explosive power, agility, balance, and flexibility will be discussed. The types of sports include silat, taekwondo, Muay Thai, wushu, boxing, weightlifting, cycling, squash, sepak takraw, volleyball, netball and hockey.


Dr. Rebecca RANDELL
Senior Scientist,
Gatorade Sports Science Institute
UK

Dr Rebecca Randell is a scientist with a background in exercise physiology and sports nutrition. Rebecca earned her bachelor’s degree at the University of Birmingham in 2009 and received her Ph.D from the University of Birmingham, UK. Her thesis investigated nutrition interventions and fat oxidation rates during exercise. Rebecca is now a Senior Scientist at the Gatorade Sports Science Institute (GSSI). Her current role involves managing and supporting GSSI service engagements in Latin America, Italy, India, Asia and China.  Rebecca also oversees the Sports Science Exchange articles which are housed on www.GSSIweb.org. Rebecca is passionate about sports nutrition and enjoys working with athletes to design appropriate and personalized nutritional strategies. She has extensive experience working with elite athletes and clubs such as Olympic distance runners, Ironmen triathletes, Olympic badminton players, FC Barcelona and Manchester City FC. She continues to author publications in peer reviewed journals and deliver invited presentations in the UK and abroad.

Energy Availability in Professional Female Football Players

Energy availability (EA) is the amount of dietary energy available for normal physiological function after accounting for energy expended in exercise, expressed in proportion to lean body mass (LBM). Low EA has been associated with negative health and performance consequences such as menstrual dysfunction, osteoporosis and increased injury risk. Low EA can be a result of intentional dietary restriction and/or increased energy expenditure in exercise to reduce body mass, as occurs with disordered eating/eating disorders and dieting, or an inadvertent failure to match energy intake to energetic demands. Female football players are at an increased risk of experiencing low EA due to a high training and match load. This presentation will discuss the current literature that is available on energy availability in female football players, along with the possible risk factors of reduced or low EA. It will also highlight practical solutions for monitoring EA in team sport athletes.


Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nara Rejane Cruz de OLIVEIRA
Board of Directors, BRICSCESS
Human Movement Sciences Department
Federal University of Sao Paulo
Brazil

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nara Rejane Cruz de Oliveira is Associate Professor of Human Movement Sciences Department at Federal University of Sao Paulo, Brazil, working at the Undergraduate and Graduate programs in Health. Dr. Oliveira completed her Doctoral degree in Education at University of Sao Paulo (USP) and her Master’s in Physical Education at the State University of Campinas (UNICAMP), Brazil. She is Member of the Board of Directors of the BRICS Council of Exercise and Sport Science (BRICSCESS) and Scientific Advisor of the Global Community Health Foundation (GCH Foundation). Dr. Oliveira has published several articles in national and international journals, as well books and chapters. She has also attended many national and international scientific meetings as invited speaker. Her research interests include Physical Education and Health, Health Education, Childhood Education and Health, Sports, Leisure and Health, Education Higher.

Physical Education, Well-Being and Health among Brazilian Children During the Social Distancing Period

The global health crisis caused by COVID-19 pandemic imposed several social changes around the world. Due to high contagiousness and rapid spread, social distancing was recognized as the main public health intervention to avoid the virus transmission. However, the abrupt modification in human routine has a big impact on wellbeing and general health, particularly among children. According the World Health Organization (WHO), physical activity is one of recommended measures for different target groups, in order to preserve mobility and reduce stress and anxiety, among other benefits, during the COVID-19 outbreak. This presentation will focus on the best practices in promoting well-being and health among Brazilian children through the Physical Education, during the social distancing period, caused by COVID-19 pandemic. The following variables will be addressing: socioeconomic context in Brazil, access and use of technology resources, level of health literacy, and the United Nations agenda for sustainable development.


Dr. Michelle LOMBARDO
President,
The OrganWise Guys Inc.
USA

Dr. Michelle Lombardo is President of the certified Women Owned Business, The OrganWise Guys Inc., and the author of The OrganWise Guys series, which promotes the benefits of good nutrition and preventive healthcare practices through creative characters playing the roles of the vital body organs. Dr. Lombardo is also the Project Manager of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation-funded Thriving Communities, Thriving Children II (TCTC2); a project designed to improve the health and literacy status of young children. Results of the program used in TCTC2, The OrganWise Guys Comprehensive School Program, are published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, the American Journal of Public Health and the Journal of Healthcare for the Poor and Underserved. Dr. Lombardo is a co-author of the book chapters, Schools as *Laboratories* for Obesity Prevention: Proven Effective Models and School-Based Obesity Prevention Interventions Show Promising Improvements in the Health and Academic Achievements among Ethnically Diverse Young Children (Global View on Childhood Obesity: Current Status, Consequences and Prevention. Elsevier, 2010, 2nd Edition, 2019). Dr. Lombardo received her D.C. from Life College of Chiropractic and was in private practice for 10 years prior to starting The OrganWise Guys Inc., now in its twenty-sixth year of operation.

Using Online Learning to Safely and Cost-Effectively Disseminate Nutrition, Physical Activity and Healthy Living Content to Children and their Families

Learning good health behaviors at an early age and having these behaviors supported and reinforced throughout daily life activities provides a sustainable prescription for the longterm health of a community and the world at large. Consistency of message, access to easy-to-understand content and leadership/buy-in from key partners is essential to ensuring that these habits “stick.” To creatively engage young learners in anatomy, physiology and the importance of healthy living, OWG INC uses a cast of characters representing organs of the body such as Hardy Heart, The Kidney Brothers, Madame Muscle and Sir Rebrum, the brain, etc. whose messages appear in stories, videos and more empowering children to be healthy and smart from the inside out. Elementary schools and Early Childhood centers incorporate these materials into the school day and then other community locations such as summer camps, after-schools, doctor’s offices, supermarkets, etc. continue with additional healthy living activities. This model streamlines prevention efforts and helps communities use the same language/materials to reach a common goal. In the wake of an increased deployment of distance-learning, the addition of an online platform to this model increases reach, scalability, allows for additional language options and also provides access to usage/tracking reports. This presentation highlights this evidence-based approach to the global health crisis combined with a replicable model utilizing technology for dissemination and implementation. The research presented is published in top-tier journals and show statically significant improvements in children’s BMI percentiles, waist circumference, blood pressure and standardized test scores.


Prof: Dr. Felipe Araya-Ramírez
Dean, College of Health Sciences
School of Human Movement Science and Quality of Life
National University
Costa Rica

Prof. Dr. Felipe Araya-Ramírez, is a professor in the School of Human Movement Science and Quality of Life, National University, Costa Rica. Dr. Araya was the Director of the Cardiac Rehabilitation Program at the National University from 2009-2020. Currently, he is the Dean from the College of Health Sciences at National University. He received his Ph.D. degree in Exercise Physiology from the Department of Kinesiology at Auburn University, Alabama, United States, in 2010. Dr. Araya served as President of Exercise is Medicine, Costa Rica from 2010-2013 and he is a Member of the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) since 2007. Dr. Araya has been working as a professor and researcher for more than 20 years in the field of Exercise Physiology and Cardiac Rehabilitation. Dr. Araya has written 42 publications, including 18 papers, 2 book chapters and 22 abstracts in Exercise Physiology and Cardiac Rehabilitation in English and Spanish.

School-based Physical Activity Program to Promote Health and Fitness for Children in Costa Rica

Overweight and obesity in children have increased dramatically in Costa Rica in the last decade. Childhood obesity has been associated with a higher risk of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) and physical inactivity is a risk factor for obesity and NCDs. School-based physical activity (PA) programs have proven to improve health and fitness as well as reducing obesity in children. We examined the effect of a school-based PA program on health and fitness in two hundred twenty-seven children (116 men and 111 women). We measured body composition, blood pressures, heart rate, and Pacer at the beginning and end of a six-week school-based PA program. Children also completed the PAQ-C and CPAFI questionnaires. The school-based PA program (Active Flag Program) consisted of the implementation of a model in which a series of directed PA routines were designed by a physical education teacher and executed daily basis during the five school days, 15 minutes per day at a low and moderate intensity. The PA routines were carried out by all students as well as school staff, officials, and parents who were invited to participate in the schoolyard. The Active Flag Program also contemplated the design and application of some complementary actions aimed at promoting healthy lifestyles. After the PA program, our children significantly decreased SBP by 6% and decreased WC by 1% Children did not show significant changes in BW, BMI, HR, DBP, VO2max, and physical activity levels reported in the questionnaires. A similar version of this abstract was published in the Journal of Physical Activity and Health, Volume 15, supplement 1, October 2018.