International Journal of Exercise Science 10(7): 964-976, 2017. A growing number of adolescents are more sedentary and have fewer formal opportunities to participate in physical activity. With the mounting evidence that sedentary time has a negative impact on cardio-metabolic profiles, health related fitness and physical activity, there is a pressing need to find an affordable adolescent physical activity intervention. One possible intervention that has been overlooked in the past is Boy Scouts of America. There are nearly 900,000 adolescent boys who participate in Boy Scouts in the United States. The purpose of this research study was to evaluate the effect of the Personal Fitness merit badge system on physical activity, health-related fitness, and cardio-metabolic blood profiles in Boy Scouts 11-17 years of age. Participants were fourteen (N = 14) Boy Scouts from the Great Salt Lake Council of the Boy Scouts of America who earned their Personal Fitness merit badge. Classes were held in the Spring of 2016 where boys received the information needed to obtain the merit badge and data were collected. Results from the related-samples Wilcoxon signed rank test showed that the median of differences between VO2 peak pre-test and post-test scores were statistically significant (p = 0.004). However, it also showed that the differences between the Pre-MetS (metabolic syndrome) and Post-MetS scores (p = 0.917), average steps taken per day (p = 0.317), and BMI (p = 0.419) were not statistically significant. In conclusion, the merit badge program had a positive impact on cardiovascular endurance, suggesting this program has potential to improve cardiovascular fitness and should be considered for boys participating in Boy Scouts.
Maxwell, Justin; Burns, Ryan D.; and Brusseau, Timothy A.
"Effects of the Boy Scouts of America Personal Fitness Merit Badge on Cardio-Metabolic Risk, Health Related Fitness and Physical Activity in Adolescents Boys,"
International Journal of Exercise Science: Vol. 10
7, Pages 964 - 976.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.wku.edu/ijes/vol10/iss7/4