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Police Officers Who are Physically Active and Have Low Levels of Body Fat Show Better Reaction Time

Dominski, Fábio Hech MD; Crocetta, Tania Brusque MD; Santo, Leandro Barbosa do Espírito; Cardoso, Thiago Elpídio; da Silva, Rudney PhD; Andrade, Alexandro PhD
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: Post Acceptance: October 23, 2017
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0000000000001205
Original Article: PDF Only


To analyze the relationship between reaction time (RT), level of physical activity (PA) and anthropometric indicators in police officers in Special Operation Units.


22 police officers (34.5 ± 9.1 years old) from Santa Catarina, Brazil, who were members of a Special Operation Coordination Unit. RT was measured by the Vienna Test System. Were obtained values of body mass index (BMI), body fat (BF), and waist-to-hip ratio. PA were investigated using the Physical Activity Evaluation Questionnaire.


Younger police officers (<34 years) and BF<15% presented better performance in RT when compared with older, and BF>15%, respectively. RT was negatively related to PA (rho = −0.48, p < .05), and positively related to BF (rho = 0.76, p < .01) and to BMI (rho = 0.46, p < .05).


Participants from the group with greater BF and insufficient PA reacted significantly slower than others.

Address correspondence to: Fábio Hech Dominski, MD, Santa Catarina State University, Postal Address: Pascoal Simone, 358, CEP 88080–350, Coqueiros, Florianópolis, Santa Catarina, Brazil (

Funding: This study was supported by the Higher Education Personnel Improvement Coordination (CAPES) (Public notice No. 03/2015), through masters fellowships.

Ethical approval and informed consent: Ethical approval was obtained from Santa Catarina State University (protocol number 63411/2012) and those who participated in the study submitted signed informed consents.

Conflict of Interest: The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.

Copyright © 2017 by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine