Does childcare work promote cardiorespiratory fitness and health? A cross-sectional study of Danish childcare workers based on accelerometry and heart rate measurements

Tidsskriftartikel - 2021

Resume

Childcare workers are reported to have poor cardiorespiratory fitness and health. The Goldilocks Work Principle argues that productive work should be designed with the right composition, intensity and alternations of physical behaviors so that workers get fit and healthy. The purpose of this study was to investigate: (1) composition, (2) intensity and (3) alternations of physical behaviors during work and leisure among childcare workers. Data were collected using accelerometers and heart rate monitors over five workdays among 51 childcare workers at five Danish childcare institutions. Workers mainly spent their work time sedentary (43.0%), spent little time (0.7%) at sufficiently high cardiometabolic intensity to increase cardiorespiratory fitness and often alternated between physical behaviors (67.0% occurred in bouts of <5 min). These findings indicate that the workers have a composition of behaviors at work dominated by sedentary time, little time with high cardiometabolic intensity, and frequent alternations between behaviors. During leisure, workers spent more time sedentary (59.4%), more time at high cardiometabolic intensity (3.4%) and less time occurred in bouts <5 min (38.7%). We see a potential for promoting cardiorespiratory fitness and health of childcare workers by redesigning the way they play with the children, so that work time with high cardiometabolic intensity is increased.

Reference

Schmidt KG, Kildedal R, Lerche AF, Vilhelmsen M, Rasmussen CL, Mathiassen SE, Straker L, Holtermann A. Does childcare work promote cardiorespiratory fitness and health? A cross-sectional study of Danish childcare workers based on accelerometry and heart rate measurements. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 2021;18(23):.
doi: 10.3390/ijerph182312496

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