Objectively measured habitual physical activity and sedentary behaviour in obese and non-obese Malaysian children

Sharifah Wajihah Wafa, Hana Hamzaid, Ruzita Abd Talib, John J Reilly

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Citations (Scopus)


The present study examined objectively measured physical activity in Malaysian children and compared the differences in physical levels between obese and healthy weight children. Eighty-six obese children were matched for age and sex with 86 healthy weight children with median age 9.5 years. Habitual physical activity and sedentary behaviour were measured over 5 days using Actigraph accelerometers. Time spent sedentary was significantly higher in the obese group (90% vs. 86% of daytime; p = 0.001). Moderate-to-vigorous-intensity physical activity was significantly higher in the healthy weight group (1.2 vs. 0.7% of daytime, p <0.001). In both healthy weight and obese children, physical activity levels were exceptionally low, although moderate-to-vigorous-intensity physical activity was significantly lower in the obese group than the healthy weight group. Efforts to prevent and treat obesity in Malaysian children will need a substantial focus on the promotion of reductions in sedentary behaviour and increases in physical activity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)161-163
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Tropical Pediatrics
Issue number2
Early online date8 Nov 2013
Publication statusPublished - 2 Apr 2014


  • accelerometry
  • physical activity
  • sedentary behaviour
  • obesity

Cite this