Physical activity interventions and depression in children and adolescents: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Brown, Helen Elizabeth, Pearson, Natalie, Braithwaite, Rock E., Brown, Wendy J. and Biddle, Stuart J. H. (2013) Physical activity interventions and depression in children and adolescents: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Sports Medicine, 43 3: 195-206. doi:10.1007/s40279-012-0015-8

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Author Brown, Helen Elizabeth
Pearson, Natalie
Braithwaite, Rock E.
Brown, Wendy J.
Biddle, Stuart J. H.
Title Physical activity interventions and depression in children and adolescents: A systematic review and meta-analysis
Journal name Sports Medicine   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0112-1642
1179-2035
Publication date 2013-03
Year available 2013
Sub-type Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
DOI 10.1007/s40279-012-0015-8
Open Access Status File (Author Post-print)
Volume 43
Issue 3
Start page 195
End page 206
Total pages 12
Place of publication Auckland, New Zealand
Publisher Adis International
Collection year 2014
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Context: Evidence suggests chronic physical activity (PA) participation may be both protective against the onset of and beneficial for reducing depressive symptoms.

Objective:
The aim of this article is to assess the impact of PA interventions on depression in children and adolescents using meta-analysis.

Data sources:
Published English language studies were located from manual and computerized searches of the following databases: PsycInfo, The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews and The Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, Trials Register of Promoting Health Interventions (TRoPHI; EPPI Centre), Web of Science and MEDLINE. Study selection: Studies meeting inclusion criteria (1) reported on interventions to promote or increase PA; (2) included children aged 5-11 years and/or adolescents aged 12-19 years; (3) reported on results using a quantitative measure of depression; (4) included a non-physical control or comparison group; and (5) were published in peer-reviewed journals written in English, up to and including May 2011 (when the search was conducted). Data extraction: Studies were coded for methodological, participant and study characteristics. Comprehensive Meta-Analysis version-2 software was used to compute effect sizes, with subgroup analyses to identify moderating characteristics. Study quality was assessed using the Delphi technique.

Results: Nine studies were included (n = 581); most were school-based randomized controlled trials, randomized by individual. Studies used a variety of measurement tools to assess depressive symptoms. The summary treatment effect was small but significant (Hedges' g = -0.26, standard error = 0.09, 95% confidence intervals = -0.43, -0.08, p = 0.004). Subgroup analyses showed that methodological (e.g. studies with both education and PA intervention; those with a higher quality score; and less than 3 months in duration) and participant characteristics (e.g. single-gender studies; those targeting overweight or obese groups) contributed most to the reduction in depression.

Conclusions: There was a small significant overall effect for PA on depression. More outcome-focused, high-quality trials are required to effectively inform the implementation of programmes to reduce depressive symptoms in children and adolescents.
Keyword Controlled Trial
Mental Health
Publication Bias
Dose response
Overweight
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
Collections: Official 2014 Collection
School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences Publications
 
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