Effect and process evaluation of a kindergarten-based, family-involved intervention with a randomized cluster design on sedentary behaviour in 4- to 6- year old European preschool children: The ToyBox-study.
ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND:The aim of the present study evaluated the effect and process of the ToyBox-intervention on proxy-reported sedentary behaviours in 4- to 6-year-old preschoolers from six European countries. METHODS:In total, 2434 preschoolers' parents/primary caregivers (mean age: 4.7±0.4 years, 52.2% boys) filled out a questionnaire, assessing preschoolers' sedentary behaviours (TV/DVD/video viewing, computer/video games use and quiet play) on weekdays and weekend days. Multilevel repeated measures analyses were conducted to measure the intervention effects. Additionally, process evaluation data were included to better understand the intervention effects. RESULTS:Positive intervention effects were found for computer/video games use. In the total sample, the intervention group showed a smaller increase in computer/video games use on weekdays (ß = -3.40, p = 0.06; intervention: +5.48 min/day, control: +8.89 min/day) and on weekend days (ß = -5.97, p = 0.05; intervention: +9.46 min/day, control: +15.43 min/day) from baseline to follow-up, compared to the control group. Country-specific analyses showed similar effects in Belgium and Bulgaria, while no significant intervention effects were found in the other countries. Process evaluation data showed relatively low teachers' and low parents' process evaluation scores for the sedentary behaviour component of the intervention (mean: 15.6/24, range: 2.5-23.5 and mean: 8.7/17, range: 0-17, respectively). Higher parents' process evaluation scores were related to a larger intervention effect, but higher teachers' process evaluation scores were not. CONCLUSIONS:The ToyBox-intervention had a small, positive effect on European preschoolers' computer/video games use on both weekdays and weekend days, but not on TV/DVD/video viewing or quiet play. The lack of larger effects can possibly be due to the fact that parents were only passively involved in the intervention and to the fact that the intervention was too demanding for the teachers. Future interventions targeting preschoolers' behaviours should involve parents more actively in both the development and the implementation of the intervention and, when involving schools, less demanding activities for teachers should be developed. TRIAL REGISTRATION:clinicaltrials.gov NCT02116296.
Project description:BACKGROUND:In preschoolers, high levels of sedentary behaviour are associated with several adverse health outcomes. The purpose of this study is to report the effects of the ToyBox-intervention (a European 24-week cluster randomised controlled trial) on sedentary behaviour in preschoolers. METHODS:In Belgium, 859 preschoolers from 27 kindergartens (15 intervention and 12 control) wore an accelerometer to objectively measure their sedentary time and 1715 parents/caregivers completed a questionnaire to assess sedentary activities in which preschoolers participate at home. Main outcomes were objectively measured sedentary time, time spent watching TV, using the computer and time spent in quiet play. Multilevel repeated measures analyses were conducted to take clustering into account. Intention to treat analysis was used to handle missing data. RESULTS:A sample of 859 (29.5% of all contacted children) preschoolers (4.4?±?0.6 years, 54.4% boys) provided valid accelerometer data at either baseline or follow-up and parents of 1715 (58.9% of all contacted children) preschoolers (4.4?±?0.5 years, 52.5% boys) completed a questionnaire at either baseline or follow-up. No intervention effects were found on objectively and subjectively measured total sedentary time in the total sample. However, some effects on objectively and subjectively measured sedentary time were found in specific subgroups. Preschoolers from the intervention group from high SES kindergartens and preschoolers with high levels of sedentary time at baseline decreased their sedentary time, while preschoolers from the control group increased their sedentary time. Girls in the intervention group decreased their TV viewing time during weekend days (-5.83 min/day), while girls' &TV viewing in the control group increased (+4.15 min/day). In low SES kindergartens, a smaller increase for computer time during weekend days was found in preschoolers in intervention kindergartens (+6.06 min/day) than in control kindergartens (+12.49 min/day). CONCLUSION:While some small positive effects were found in some sub-groups, the ToyBox-intervention had no effect on objectively and subjectively measured sedentary time in the total sample. A longer period to implement the intervention and a more active involvement of parents/caregivers might enhance intervention effects. The ToyBox-study is registered with the clinical trials registry clinicaltrials.gov, ID: NCT02116296.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The ToyBox-intervention is a theory- and evidence-based intervention delivered in kindergartens to improve four- to six-year-old children's energy balance-related behaviours and prevent obesity. The current study aimed to (1) examine the effect of the ToyBox-intervention on increasing European four- to six-year-old children' steps per day, and (2) examine if a higher process evaluation score from teachers and parents was related to a more favourable effect on steps per day. METHODS:A sample of 2438 four- to six-year-old children (51.9% boys, mean age 4.75 ± 0.43 years) from 6 European countries (Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Greece, Poland and Spain) wore a motion sensor (pedometer or accelerometer) for a minimum of two weekdays and one weekend day both at baseline and follow-up to objectively measure their steps per day. Kindergarten teachers implemented the physical activity component of the ToyBox-intervention for 6 weeks in total, with a focus on (1) environmental changes in the classroom, (2) the child performing the actual behaviour and (3) classroom activities. Children's parents received newsletters, tip cards and posters. To assess intervention effects, multilevel repeated measures analyses were conducted for the total sample and the six intervention countries separately. In addition, process evaluation questionnaires were used to calculate a total process evaluation score (with implementation and satisfaction as a part of the overall score) for teachers and parents which was then linked with the physical activity outcomes. RESULTS:No significant intervention effects on four- to six-year-old children' steps per weekday, steps per weekend day and steps per average day were found, both in the total sample and in the country-specific samples (all p > 0.05). In general, the intervention effects on steps per day were least favourable in four- to six-year-old children with a low teachers process evaluation score and most favourable in four- to six-year-old children with a high teachers process evaluation score. No differences in intervention effects were found for a low, medium or high parents' process evaluation score. CONCLUSION:The physical activity component of the ToyBox-intervention had no overall effect on four- to six-year-old children' steps per day. However, the process evaluation scores showed that kindergarten teachers that implemented the physical activity component of the ToyBox-intervention as planned and were satisfied with the physical activity component led to favourable effects on children's steps per day. Strategies to motivate, actively involve and engage the kindergarten teachers and parents/caregivers are needed to induce larger effects.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Within the ToyBox-study, a kindergarten-based, family-involved intervention was developed to prevent overweight and obesity in European preschoolers, targeting four key behaviours related to early childhood obesity, including water consumption. The present study aimed to examine the effect of the ToyBox-intervention (cluster randomized controlled trial) on water intake and beverage consumption in European preschoolers and to investigate if the intervention effects differed by implementation score of kindergartens and parents/caregivers. METHOD:A sample of 4964 preschoolers (4.7 ± 0.4 years; 51.5% boys) from six European countries (Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Greece, Poland, Spain) was included in the data analyses. A standardized protocol was used and parents/caregivers filled in socio-demographic data and a food-frequency questionnaire. To assess intervention effects, multilevel repeated measures analyses were conducted for the total sample and for the six country-specific samples. Based on the process evaluation questionnaire of teachers and parents/caregivers, an implementation score was constructed. To assess differences in water intake and beverage consumption by implementation score in the total sample, multilevel repeated measures analyses were performed. RESULTS:Limited intervention effects on water intake from beverages and overall beverage consumption were found. However, important results were found on prepacked fruit juice consumption, with a larger decrease in the intervention group compared to the control group. However, also a decline in plain milk consumption was found. Implementation scores were rather low in both kindergartens and parents/caregivers. Nevertheless, more favorable effects on beverage choices were found in preschoolers whose parents/caregivers and kindergarten teachers had higher implementation scores compared to those with lower implementation scores. CONCLUSION:The ToyBox-intervention can provide the basis for the development of more tailor-made interventions. However, new strategies to improve implementation of interventions should be created.
Project description:This study aimed at (1) studying the effect of the standardized ToyBox intervention on European preschoolers' snacking behavior, and (2) studying whether a higher process evaluation score from teachers and parents/caregivers was associated with a more positive result for preschoolers' snack intake. A sample of 4970 preschoolers (51.4% boys, 4.74 ± 0.44 years) from six European countries provided information on snack intake with the use of a Food Frequency Questionnaire. To investigate the effect of the intervention, multilevel repeated measures analyses were executed for the total sample and the six country-specific samples. Furthermore, questionnaires to measure process evaluation were used to compute a total process evaluation score for teachers and parents/caregivers. No significant intervention effects on preschoolers' snack intake were found (all p > 0.003). In general, no different effects of the intervention on snack intake were found according to kindergarten teachers' and parents'/caregivers' process evaluation scores. The lack of effects could be due to limited intervention duration and dose. To induce larger effects on preschoolers' snack intake, a less standardized intervention which is more tailored to the local needs might be needed.
Project description:The aim of the current study was to compare levels of energy balance-related behaviours (physical activity, sedentary behaviour, and dietary behaviours (more specifically water consumption, sugar-sweetened beverage consumption and unhealthy snacking)) in four- to six-year-old preschoolers from six European countries (Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Greece, Poland, and Spain) within the ToyBox cross-sectional study.A sample of 4,045 preschoolers (4.77 ± 0.43 years; 52.2% boys) had valid physical activity data (steps per day), parents of 8,117 preschoolers (4.78 ± 0.46 years; 53.0% boys) completed a parental questionnaire with questions on sedentary behaviours (television viewing, computer use, and quiet play), and parents of 7,244 preschoolers (4.77 ± 0.44 years; 52.0% boys) completed a food frequency questionnaire with questions on water consumption, sugar-sweetened beverage consumption and unhealthy snacking.The highest levels of physical activity were found in Spain (12,669 steps/day on weekdays), while the lowest levels were found in Bulgaria and Greece (9,777 and 9,656 steps/day on weekdays, respectively). German preschoolers spent the least amount of time in television viewing (43.3 min/day on weekdays), while Greek preschoolers spent the most time in television viewing (88.5 min/day on weekdays). A considerable amount of time was spent in quiet play in all countries, with the highest levels in Poland (104.9 min/day on weekdays), and the lowest levels in Spain (60.4 min/day on weekdays). Belgian, German, and Polish preschoolers had the lowest intakes of water and the highest intakes of sugar-sweetened beverages. The intake of snacks was the highest in Belgian preschoolers (73.1 g/day) and the lowest in Greek preschoolers (53.3 g/day).Across six European countries, differences in preschoolers' energy balance-related behaviours were found. Future interventions should target European preschoolers' energy balance-related behaviours simultaneously, but should apply country-specific adaptations.
Project description:This study is part of the ToyBox-study, which is conducted in six European countries (Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Greece, Poland and Spain), aiming to develop a cost-effective kindergarten-based, family-involved intervention to prevent overweight and obesity in four- to six-year-old preschool children. In the current study, we aimed to examine and compare preschoolers' step count patterns, across the six European countries. A sample of 3578 preschoolers (mean age: 4.8 ± 0.4) was included. Multilevel analyses were performed to take clustering of measurements into account. Based on the average hourly steps, step count patterns for the six European countries were created for weekdays and weekend days. The step count patterns during weekdays were related to the daily kindergarten schedules. Step count patterns during weekdays showed several significant peaks and troughs (p < 0.01) and clearly reflected the kindergartens' daily schedules, except for Germany. For example, low numbers of steps were observed during afternoon naptimes and high numbers of steps during recess. In Germany, step count patterns did not show clear peaks and troughs, which can be explained by a less structured kindergarten schedule. On weekend days, differences in step count patterns were observed in the absolute number of steps in the afternoon trough and the period in which the evening peak occurred. Differences in step count patterns across the countries can be explained by differences in (school) policy, lifestyle habits, and culture. Therefore, it might be important to respond to these step count patterns and more specifically to tackle the inactive periods during interventions to promote physical activity in preschoolers.
Project description:Sedentary time and screen-viewing (SV) are associated with chronic disease risk in adults. Parent and child sedentary time and SV are associated. Parents influence children's SV through parenting styles and role modelling. Understanding whether parents' attitudes toward child SV are associated with their own SV and sedentary time will aid development of family interventions to reduce sedentary behaviours. Cross-sectional data with 809 parents from Bristol, UK were collected in 2012-2013 and analysed in 2016. Parental total sedentary time was derived from accelerometer data. Parents self-reported daily television viewing, use of computers, games consoles, and smartphone/tablets (none, 1-59 min, 1-2 h, > 2 h) and attitudes toward child SV. Adjusted linear and logistic regression models were used to examine associations, separately for weekdays and weekend days. Having negative attitudes toward child SV was associated with lower weekend sedentary time (Coeff: - 6.41 [95% CI: - 12.37 to - 0.45] min/day). Limiting behaviours and having negative attitudes toward child SV were associated with lower weekday television viewing (OR: 0.72 [0.57-0.90] and 0.57 [0.47-0.70] respectively), weekend television viewing (0.75 [0.59-0.95] and 0.61 [0.50-0.75]), and weekend computer use (0.73 [0.58-0.92] and 0.80 [0.66-0.97]). Negative attitudes were also associated with lower smartphone use on weekdays (0.70 [0.57-0.85]) and weekends (0.70 [0.58-0.86]). Parent self-efficacy for limiting child SV and setting SV rules were not associated with sedentary time or SV. Reporting negative attitudes toward child SV was associated with lower accelerometer-assessed weekend total sedentary time and self-reported SV behaviours, while limiting child SV was also associated with lower self-reported SV.
Project description:The present study aimed to examine whether a multibehavioural intervention with a focus on specific energy balance-related behaviours can affect total diet quality and its four subcomponents in European preschoolers and to investigate if these intervention effects differed by socioeconomic status (SES). Parents/caregivers of 3.5 to 5.5 year-olds (n = 4968) recruited through kindergartens in six European countries within the ToyBox-study completed questionnaires on socio-demographics and a food frequency questionnaire on their preschoolers' diet. To assess intervention effects and differences by SES, multilevel repeated measures analyses were conducted. In contrast to no significant difference in total diet quality, in both the intervention and control group, the dietary quality and dietary equilibrium increased, with a larger increase in the intervention group (mean difference quality: +3.4%; mean difference equilibrium: +0.9%) compared to the control group (quality: +1.5%; equilibrium: +0.2%). SES was not a significant moderator for intervention effects on total diet quality, nor for the four subcomponents. This study indicates that multibehavioural interventions with a focus on specific energy balance-related behaviours in preschoolers not only affect those targeted behaviours, but can also have more generalized effects. The ToyBox-intervention effects were similar for both lower and high SES preschoolers.
Project description:Research suggests physical activity is linked to obesity. Further, the physical activity of healthy parents and their children is associated with each other. However, this relationship has not been examined in obese parents and their obese children.The purpose of this study was to compare the physical activity and sedentary time of obese, low-income, ethnic minority parents and their children on weekdays and weekend days using accelerometry. Data were obtained from eight rural sites in the middle and eastern part of North Carolina (N.C.), United States (U.S.) from 2007-2010 using a rolling enrollment. One hundred and ninety-nine obese parents (94 % female) and their obese children (54 % female) wore accelerometers simultaneously for three weekdays and one weekend day. Total physical activity, moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and sedentary time and proportions were determined.Parents' and children's total physical activity and MVPA levels were lower on weekend days than weekdays. Total counts per minute for children on weekdays and weekend days were greater than for parents (p < 0.001). Total counts per minute were more highly correlated on weekend days than weekdays (r = 0.352, p < 0.0002 versus r = 0.165, p < 0.025). Parents' performed MVPA for 14 (SD = ±25) and 9 (SD = ±16) minutes/day on weekdays and weekend days, respectively; children performed MVPA for 37 (SD = ±25) and 31(SD = ±38) minutes/day for weekdays and weekend days, respectively. Correlations between parents and children for MVPA were higher on weekend days versus weekdays (r = 0.253 and 0.177, respectively; p < 0.015). Associations for sedentary time followed a similar trend, with r = 0.33 (p < 0.0002) for weekend days and r = 0.016 (p < 0.026) for weekdays. Associations between obese parent-child dyads on sedentary time were stronger for girls, while associations between dyads on MVPA were stronger for boys. However, formal interaction analyses were not significant (p > 0.13).Since physical activity levels of obese parents and their obese child are somewhat related, especially on weekend days, combined parent-child obesity programs focused on reducing sedentary time could be beneficial, particularly for the child.In conclusion, this study of the physical activity levels of obese parents and their obese children found some relationships between the parents' and children's physical activity and sedentary behavior patterns, especially on weekend days.NCT01378806 .
Project description:Physical activity, sedentary behavior, and sleep guidelines for preschool children were already established and integrated into the 24 h movement behavior guidelines in 2017. The aim of the current study was to investigate correlates of meeting or not meeting the physical activity, sedentary behavior, and sleep guidelines in Belgian preschool children. In total, 595 preschool children (53.3% boys, 46.7% girls, mean age: 4.2 years) provided complete data for the three behaviors and potentially associated correlates. Physical activity was objectively measured with accelerometers. Screen time, sleep duration, and correlates were reported by parents with the use of a questionnaire. Backward logistic regression was used to identify factors associated with meeting all guidelines for weekdays and weekend days. In the final model, older preschoolers (OR = 1.89), having a normal weight compared to being underweight (OR = 0.30), having parents that do not watch a lot of television (OR = 0.99), and having a father that attained higher education (OR = 1.91) were associated with meeting all guidelines on weekdays. For weekend days, a significant association was found for attending a sports club (OR = 1.08). Overall, only a few factors were associated with meeting the guidelines. A more comprehensive measurement of preschool children's potential correlates of physical activity, sedentary behavior, and sleep is warranted.