Effect of an Accelerometer on Body Weight and Fitness in Overweight and Obese Active Duty Soldiers

Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism Service, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, 8901 Rockville Pike, Bethesda, MD 20889, USA.
Military medicine (Impact Factor: 0.77). 01/2013; 178(1):82-7. DOI: 10.7205/MILMED-D-12-00275
Source: PubMed


This study evaluated whether using a web-linked accelerometer, plus mandatory physical training, is associated with various weight- and fitness-related outcomes in overweight/obese active duty soldiers. Soldiers who failed the height/weight standards of the Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT) were randomized to use a Polar FA20 accelerometer device (polar accelerometer group [PA], n = 15) or usual care (UC, n = 13) for 6 months. Both groups received 1.5 hours of lifestyle instruction. We collected data at baseline, 2, 4, and 6 months, and evaluated group differences in temporal changes in study outcomes. At 6 months, 1/28 subjects (UC) passed the APFT height/weight standards. There were no group differences in changes in weight (PA: -0.1 kg vs. UC: +0.3 kg; p = 0.9), body fat (PA: -0.9% vs. UC: -1.1%; p = 0.9), systolic blood pressure (PA: +1.3 mm Hg vs. UC: -2.1 mm Hg; p = 0.2), diastolic blood pressure (PA: +3.8 mm Hg vs. UC: -2.4 mm Hg; p = 0.3), or resting heart rate in beats per minute (bpm) (PA: +7.8 bpm vs. UC: +0.1 bpm; p = 0.2). These results suggest that using an accelerometer with web-based feedback capabilities plus mandatory physical training does not assist in significant weight loss or ability to pass the APFT height/weight standards among overweight/obese soldiers.

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