The Relationship between Cardiovascular Fitness and Body Mass Index to Student Achievement in 5th Grade Hispanic Children of the Lower Rio Grande Valley of South Texas

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The purpose of this quantitative study was to examine the relationship between cardiovascular fitness, body mass index and academic performance in 547 Hispanic children in 5th grade from a Rio Grande Valley school district. The dependent variable, academic performance, was measured by children’s gain score on the STAAR Progress Measure for Reading and Math assessments. The independent variables of physical fitness were measured by scores on cardiovascular fitness and body mass index from the FITNESSGRAM assessment. The statistical and data analysis method used by this study utilized multiple regression. The results revealed that body mass index was correlated with academic performance. Body mass index accounted for a statistically significant variance in math gains while time did not explain any significant variance in math. There was no correlation between reading gains and time and body mass index. The results by weight group revealed a significant correlation between time and reading gains for the normal weight group and a significant correlation between body mass index and math gains for the obese group. These results suggest that at grade 5, consideration be given to body mass index levels of Hispanic children from low-income backgrounds.


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Noble International Journal of Social Sciences Research