Iwate Prefecture is situated at the northern part of Honshu of Japan and its cultivated area is only 20 per cent of the whole area due to Oshu and Kitakami Mountains. Therefore, rural district of Iwate is one of the most secluded place in Japan. The inhabitants are poor, frequently attacked by cold weather in winter and isolated from cultural life. The author studied health and fitness of school boys and girls under these conditions. The subjects were 431 boys and girls belonging to 3-5 grades secluded primary and junior high schools. One thousand and five hundred boys and girls in Tokyo were contrasted. The results obtained were as follows: 1. Rural boys and girls had shorter stature and shorter legs. 2. Body weight and chest girth were also inferior in rural subjects. 3. Brachial girth and skinf old thickness which indicate nutritive status were much inferior in rural to urban subjects. This fact suggests poor nutritive life in the rural inhabitants.
Rural boys and girls are insufficiently furnished with facilities and equipments of physical education. Moreover, they cannot freely enjoy physical activities independent of family labors. In the first report the author studied on physique of rural boys and girls and found that they had lower height and wider chest girth. This report deals with physical fitness of them. The subjects are same as those in the first report. Back strength, grip strength, vital capacity, 50m sprint, standing long jump, softball throw and chinning (repeated chinning in males and flexed arm hang in females) were studied and the following results were obtained: 1. Back and grip strength were superior in urban subjects to rural ones. 2. Vital capacity of rural boys and girls was inferior to that of urban ones at lower grades of primary schools. But as the former developed rapidly, they exceeded the latter at junior high schools. 3. Fifty meter sprint of urban boys and girls exceeded rural ones in both sexes. 4. Standing long jump was superior in urban males, but there was no difference in females. 5. Soft-ball throw of urban subjects was superior in males but inferior in females. This finding is considered to be resulted from the inferior ability of urban females. 6. There was no difference in chinning performance between urban and rural boys but the former was much inferior to the latter in case of girls.
In the previous papers, rural boys and girls were found inferior in many respects of physique and physical fitness. In order to clarify the cause, the author studied on food intake and blood composition of rural and urban subjects. Seventy nine lunches at 5th grade secluded schools were weighed and calculated their nutrition. Daily food intake was also surveyed for five days by teachers with the quettionnaire. The results obtained were compared with nutritive standards of school lunch and daily intake. Blood composition was examined both in rural and urban boys and girls The results wese summarized as follows: 1. Rural diet was lacking in all nutritious especially animal protein, fat, vitamine A, B and C. Most of calorie intake depended upon corns. These deviated diet cannot be balanced by milk supply. 2. Materials of food were limited to self products and fish. Therefore, fat, oil, milk products, and meat were few and cooking was monotonous. 3. Hemoglobin content and hematocrit value of rural boys and girls were equal to those of urban ones But the former subjects were inferior to the latter in serum protein, globurin, calcium, phosphate, cholesterol. These differences can be explained as the result of food intake. 4. The difference of blood, stated above, should influence upon growth and health of rural boys and girls. Low stature, short legs, reduced weight, angular stomatitis, subcutaneous blood flecks detected in rural subjects were considered to be mainly due to the dietary status.
As reported in the previous paper, the growth of the stature in urban boys and girls was superior in all ages to that in rural subjects . This report deals with skeletal age determined by X ray films of the left hand in 116 urban and 226 rural boys and girls aged from 6 to 15. Films of the subjects were referred to the Japanese standard films of bone development arranged by Dr. Inoue. There was no difference of skeletal age between urban and rural subjects although the stature of the former was superior to that of the latter by 3-10 cm. This facts means that rural boys and girls are equally maturated in the bone compared with urban subjects in spite of shorter stature of the former. Therefore, rural subjects may not be expected to be tall adults. Skeletal maturation is considered to be less influenced by postnatal environment compared with the physique and physical fitness .
Health Examination for children of three years old has been performed as one of the governmental health services in Japan and has a role of finding health problems arising at that phase of their development. However, the rate of attendance at this examination is not high particularly in urban area of big cities like Tokyo. For the purpose of detection of factors involved in this low rate of attendance, a survey was carried out on 590 children who were the objects of the examination at Nakano-Kita Health Center in Tokyo in 1966. The comparative analysis of the different conditions between the attendants and the non-attendants, revealed that there was a difficulty in getting contact with the objects because of highly frequent change of their adresses. Another reason of non-attendance was related to the thought of parents that the similar examination could be made by their home-doctors. For the solution of these difficulties it can be sussested the examination should be arranged effectively so that it would meet the real needs of the community. The participation of home-doctors to this examination program was also considered to be of foundamental importance.