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International Journal of Adolescent Medicine and Health

Editor-in-Chief: Merrick, Joav

Editorial Board: Birch, Diana ML / Blum, Robert W. / Greydanus, MD, Dr. HC (Athens), Donald E. / Hardoff, Daniel / Kerr, Mike / Levy, Howard B / Morad, Mohammed / Omar, Hatim A. / de Paul, Joaquin / Rydelius, Per-Anders / Shek, Daniel T.L. / Sher, Leo / Silber, Tomas J. / Towns, Susan / Urkin, Jacob / Verhofstadt-Deneve, Leni / Zeltzer, Lonnie / Tenenbaum, Ariel

CiteScore 2018: 0.79

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.350
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.476

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Volume 31, Issue 4


The effects of introducing Tabata interval training and stability exercises to school children as a school-based intervention program

Annika Ekström / Anna Hafsteinsson Östenberg
  • Corresponding author
  • Department of Sports Science, Linnaeus University, SE-351 95 Växjö, Sweden, Phone: +46 (0)734 216 246
  • Email
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Glenn Björklund
  • The Swedish Sports Confederation, Stockholm, Sweden
  • Swedish Winter Sport Research Centre, Department of Health Sciences, Mid Sweden University, Östersund, Sweden
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Marie Alricsson
  • Department of Sports Science, Linnaeus University, Kalmar/Växjö, Sweden
  • Swedish Winter Sport Research Centre, Department of Health Sciences, Mid Sweden University, Östersund, Sweden
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
Published Online: 2017-11-23 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ijamh-2017-0043



Physical activities during leisure time as well as school hours have changed over the past few years, with adolescents being less physically active and adopting a sedentary lifestyle.


The overall objective of this mixed-methods study was to evaluate the feasibility of introducing a 4-min Tabata interval training into a lower secondary school context. A further aim was to evaluate the possible effects on: coordination, balance, and strength.


The study was conducted as an intervention study with a mixed-method approach. Forty-three children, aged 7–9 years, participated in the intervention group. Additionally, 13 children were recruited as a control group. The intervention itself was delivered by the teachers and was performed for 4-min every day in a classroom setting. All participants performed physical tests before and after the intervention period to evaluate the Tabata training. After the completion of the 6-week Tabata interval training, the four teachers were interviewed.


The push-ups (p = 0.004), kneeling push-ups (p = 0.03), and standing long jump (p = 0.01) improved in the intervention group after 6 weeks. No differences were observed between the genders. The teachers experienced that it worked well to integrate the Tabata interval training in the classroom setting.


After 6 weeks, a school-based Tabata intervention program improved physical performance. The teachers saw no obstacles in including the Tabata intervention program in a classroom setting and pointed out several positive aspects such as an increased energy level and development in the children’s movement patterns.

Keywords: classroom exercise; exertion; physical activity; school exercise program


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About the article

Received: 2017-03-05

Accepted: 2017-09-25

Published Online: 2017-11-23

Citation Information: International Journal of Adolescent Medicine and Health, Volume 31, Issue 4, 20170043, ISSN (Online) 2191-0278, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ijamh-2017-0043.

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