Health-related fitness of urban children in Suriname: an ethnic variety

Fenna Walhain, Marlies Declerck, J de Vries, H.E.J. Veeger, A. Ledebt

Research output: Contribution to ConferenceAbstractOther research output


Objective: The aim of our study was to investigate the health-related fitness (HRF) of 11-year-old children living in an urban area in Suriname, taking into account the difference between the five main ethnicities from Suriname.
Design and Method: Cross-sectionally, performance on the HRF components; morphologic component, cardiorespiratory and muscular endurance, muscular strength, running speed and flexibility were determined in the children of Maroon ethnicity (African descent), Hindustani ethnicity (South Asian descent), Javanese ethnicity (Indonesian descent), Creole ethnicity (African descent) and mixed ethnicity by use of the Eurofit test battery.
Results: A total of 313 children were included, of which 69 Maroon, 88 Hindustani, 42 Javanese, 27 Creole and 87 mixed children. For most of the HRF components; the 20m shuttle run test (SRT), standing broad jump (SBJ), sit and reach and sit up test, more than 50% of the children in each ethnic group performed below average according to Eurofit norm values. The majority of children were classified as having a normal BMI and performed according to or above norm value for the sprint test. A difference between ethnic groups can be seen in the in the SRT, SBJ and hand grip strength, where a larger group of the Javanese and Hindustani children performed below average, compared to the Maroon, Creole and the mixed children.
Conclusion: The 11-year-old children performed less for more than five out of seven HRF components and performance differed between ethnicities. These results highlight the need to further investigate the HRF of Surinamese children to design a suitable intervention.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2017
EventCARPHA (Caribbean Agency for Public Health) HEALTH RESEARCH CONFERENCE: 62nd Annual Conference - Georgetown, Guyana
Duration: 27 Apr 201729 Apr 2017
Conference number: 62


ConferenceCARPHA (Caribbean Agency for Public Health) HEALTH RESEARCH CONFERENCE
Abbreviated titleCARPHA

Bibliographical note

Presented at the 62nd ANNUAL CARPHA HEALTH RESEARCH CONFERENCE 27–29 April 2017 in Georgetown, Guyana.
CARPHA = Caribbean Agency for Public health


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