24-Hour Movement Behaviors and Impulsivity


The objective of this study was to examine individual and concurrent associations between meeting the Canadian 24-Hour Movement Guidelines for Children and Youth (9–11 hours of sleep per night, ≤2 hours of recreational screen time (ST) per day, and at least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity per day) and dimensions of impulsivity.


Data from this cross-sectional observational study were part of the first annual curated release of the Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development Study. Participants included 4524 children between the ages of 8 and 11 years.


In analyses, it was shown that adherence to individual movement behavior recommendations as well as combinations of adherence to movement behavior recommendations were associated with each dimension of impulsivity. Meeting all 3 movement behavior recommendations was associated with lower positive urgency (95% confidence interval [CI]: −0.12 to −0.05), negative urgency (95% CI: −0.04 to −0.08), Behavioral Inhibition System (95% CI: −0.08 to −0.01), greater perseverance (95% CI: 0.09 to 0.15), and better scores on delay-discounting (95% CI: 0.57 to 0.94). Meeting the ST and sleep recommendations was associated with less impulsive behaviors on all dimensions of impulsivity: negative urgency (95% CI: −0.20 to −0.10), positive urgency (95% CI: −0.16 to −0.08), perseverance (95% CI: 0.06 to 0.15), Behavioral Inhibition System (95% CI: −0.15 to −0.03), Behavioral Activation System (BAS) reward responsiveness (95% CI: −0.04 to −0.05), BAS drive (95% CI: −0.14 to −0.06), BAS fun-seeking (95% CI: −0.15 to −0.17), and delay-discounting task (95% CI: 0.68 to 0.97).


Findings support efforts to determine if limiting recreational ST while promoting adequate sleep enhances the treatment and prevention of impulsivity-related disorders.

Lead Researchers

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  1. Gary Goldfield

    Senior Scientist, CHEO Research Institute

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  2. Mark S. Tremblay

    Senior Scientist, CHEO Research Institute

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