Over the past 10 years research in the area of pediatric exercise has focused on two primary topics. One topic under examination is the area of exercise metabolism in children. Studies to date have investigated the effect of maturation on exercise metabolism, the influence of a positive family history for diabetes on the metabolic response to submaximal exercise, and the effect of carbohydrate sports drinks on exercise metabolism and anaerobic exercise performance.
A second area of research has dealt with the effects of exercise in children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Studies assessing the effect of stimulant medication use on the physiological and perceptual responses to exercise and the impact of an acute bout of exercise on measures of attention and impulsivity in this population have been conducted. Futures studies are being developed that will examine more closely the impact of stimulant medication on the cardiovascular response to exercise and the role in which exercise may serve as a means to curtail disruptive behavior in children with ADHD.