Time-efficient intervention to improve older adolescents’ cardiorespiratory fitness: findings from the ‘Burn 2 Learn’ cluster randomised controlled trial

Lubans, David R. and Smith, Jordan J. and Eather, Narelle and Leahy, Angus A. and Morgan, Philip J. and Lonsdale, Chris and Plotnikoff, Roland C. and Nilsson, Michael and Kennedy, Sarah G. and Holliday, Elizabeth G. and Weaver, Natasha and Noetel, Michael and Shigeta, Tatsuya T. and Mavilidi, Myrto F. and Valkenborghs, Sarah R. and Gyawali, Prajwal ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0975-5576 and Walker, Frederick R. and Costigan, Sarah A. and Hillman, Charles H. (2020) Time-efficient intervention to improve older adolescents’ cardiorespiratory fitness: findings from the ‘Burn 2 Learn’ cluster randomised controlled trial. British Journal of Sports Medicine. pp. 1-9. ISSN 0306-3674

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Abstract

Background
Cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) is an important marker of current and future health status. The primary aim of our study was to evaluate the impact of a time-efficient school-based intervention on older adolescents’ CRF.

Methods
Two-arm cluster randomised controlled trial conducted in two cohorts (February 2018 to February 2019 and February 2019 to February 2020) in New South Wales, Australia. Participants (N=670, 44.6% women, 16.0±0.43 years) from 20 secondary schools: 10 schools (337 participants) were randomised to the Burn 2 Learn (B2L) intervention and 10 schools (333 participants) to the control. Teachers in schools allocated to the B2L intervention were provided with training, resources, and support to facilitate the delivery of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) activity breaks during curriculum time. Teachers and students in the control group continued their usual practice. The primary outcome was CRF (20 m multi-stage fitness test). Secondary outcomes were muscular fitness, physical activity, hair cortisol concentrations, mental health and cognitive function. Outcomes were assessed at baseline, 6 months (primary end-point) and 12 months. Effects were estimated using mixed models accounting for clustering.

Results
We observed a group-by-time effect for CRF (difference=4.1 laps, 95% CI 1.8 to 6.4) at the primary end-point (6 months), but not at 12 months. At 6 months, group-by-time effects were found for muscular fitness, steps during school hours and cortisol.

Conclusions
Implementing HIIT during curricular time improved adolescents’ CRF and several secondary outcomes. Our findings suggest B2L is unlikely to be an effective approach unless teachers embed sessions within the school day.

Trial registration number
Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (ACTRN12618000293268).


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Health and Wellbeing (1 Jan 2015 -)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Health and Wellbeing (1 Jan 2015 -)
Date Deposited: 01 Feb 2021 05:34
Last Modified: 04 Feb 2021 03:25
Uncontrolled Keywords: aerobic fitness; exercise; intervention effectiveness; physical activity; physical fitness
Fields of Research (2008): 11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1106 Human Movement and Sports Science > 110604 Sports Medicine
Fields of Research (2020): 42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4207 Sports science and exercise > 420702 Exercise physiology
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): C Society > 92 Health > 9202 Health and Support Services > 920205 Health Education and Promotion
Socio-Economic Objectives (2020): 20 HEALTH > 2005 Specific population health (excl. Indigenous health) > 200501 Adolescent health
Identification Number or DOI: https://doi.org/10.1136/bjsports-2020-103277
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/40573

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