chapter  3
22 Pages

Global Surveillance of Cardiorespiratory and Musculoskeletal Fitness

WithJustin J. Lang, Jordan J. Smith, Grant R. Tomkinson

Effective population health surveillance is vital not only to help understand the general health of a population, but also to help inform healthy public policy. This chapter aims to review the cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) and musculoskeletal fitness (MF) literature that pertains to population health surveillance, with a focus on identifying scalable measures that are favorably associated with health among youth. It focuses on describing fitness surveillance efforts worldwide, including trends and cross-country comparisons in specific fitness test measures. Various distance/timed running tests have long been used in large national surveys of youth across the globe. Evidence supporting the national and international surveillance of CRF as an indicator of population health among youth continues to grow. MF during childhood and adolescence is increasingly being viewed as an important marker of current and future health, and should therefore be included in national and international fitness surveillance efforts alongside CRF. Physical fitness surveillance has been conducted in regional or national silos worldwide.