Validating measures of physical activity and body fat in youth with Down syndrome


The Center for Physical Activity and Health in Pediatric Disabilities directed by Dr. Dale Ulrich, in the School of Kinesiology at the University of Michigan is looking for children with and without Down syndrome between the ages of 9-17 years to participate in a physical activity study. We are studying if current ways of measuring physical activity and body fat are accurate for use in individuals with and without Down syndrome. In this study, participants will come to the University of Michigan and walk on a treadmill for 15-20 minutes. We will be measuring how much your child is moving, their heart rate, and how hard they are breathing. Participants will have their body fat measured two ways and should take between 15-25 minutes. Children should generally enjoy the activities.

Your child may participate if they:

• are between the ages of 9-17
• have a Down syndrome diagnosis OR
• have typical development without Down syndrome

Your child is not eligible if they:

• have a physical disability limiting their ability to engage in physical activity
• has a dual diagnosis with Down syndrome (i.e. Down syndrome AND autism)
• have strong adverse negative reactions to new situations
• have a history of cardiovascular disease, diabetes or other metabolic disease
• take medications to alter heart rate or metabolic responses
• have asthma or other respiratory disorder
• have instability in the neck (atlanto-axial instability)
• have an uncorrected congenital heart defect

Total time required is a maximum of two hours. Families will receive $20 to defray travel costs & participants will receive $20 for completing all measurements.

We hope this study will help us better understand the tools used to measure physical activity and body fat in youth with and without Down syndrome so health professionals can collect trustworthy information to improve the health, physical well-being, and quality of life for all individuals.

Appointments are flexible. We are available weekends and evenings. Summer scheduling is also available. If your child is interested in volunteering for this study, or you would like more information please contact:

Phil Esposito,, 734.936.2607


Dr. Dale Ulrich,, 734.615.1904

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