Using Ecological Momentary Assessment to Examine Antecedents and Correlates of Physical Activity Bouts in Adults Age 50+ Years: A Pilot Study

Health Promotion Research Branch, Behavioral Research Program, Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences, National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, MD, USA.
Annals of Behavioral Medicine (Impact Factor: 4.2). 12/2009; 38(3):249-55. DOI: 10.1007/s12160-009-9141-4
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT National recommendations supporting the promotion of multiple short (10+ minute) physical activity bouts each day to increase overall physical activity levels in middle-aged and older adults underscore the need to identify antecedents and correlates of such daily physical activity episodes.
This pilot study used Ecological Momentary Assessment to examine the time-lagged and concurrent effects of empirically supported social, cognitive, affective, and physiological factors on physical activity among adults age 50+ years.
Participants (N = 23) responded to diary prompts on a handheld computer four times per day across a 2-week period. Moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA), self-efficacy, positive and negative affect, control, demand, fatigue, energy, social interactions, and stressful events were assessed during each sequence.
Multivariate results showed that greater self-efficacy and control predicted greater MVPA at each subsequent assessment throughout the day (p < 0.05). Also, having a positive social interaction was concurrently related to higher levels of MVPA (p = 0.052).
Time-varying multidimensional individual processes predict within daily physical activity levels.

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    • "The most common methods used to collect EMA data were traditional pencil and paper diaries [20–25, 32, 34, 35] and mobile phones with MyExperience software [17, 27–31]. However, diaries for handheld computers [9, 19, 33, 36] and telephone conversations were also used [26]. Seven out of 10 studies were based on electronic methods of collecting data from children and adolescents [9, 19, 27–31]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Objective: The purpose of this study was to assess the value of ecological momentary assessment in evaluating physical activity among children, adolescents, and adults. It also determines whether ecological momentary assessment fulfills the criteria of validity, reliability, objectivity, norms, and standardization applied to the tools used for the evaluation of physical activity. Methods: The EBSCO-CINHAL, Medline, PsycINFO, PubMed, and SPORTDiscuss databases were reviewed in December 2012 for articles associated with EMA. Results: Of the 20 articles examined, half (10) used electronic methods for data collection, although various methods were used, ranging from pen and paper to smartphone applications. Ten studies used objective monitoring equipment. Nineteen studies were performed over 4 days. While the validity of the EMA method was discussed in 18 studies, only four found it to be objective. In all cases, the EMA procedures were precisely documented and confirmed to be feasible. Conclusions: Ecological momentary assessment is a valid, reliable, and feasible approach to evaluate activity and sedentary behavior. Researchers should be aware that while ecological momentary assessment offers many benefits, it simultaneously imposes many limitations which should be considered when studying physical activity.
    BioMed Research International 07/2014; 2014:915172. DOI:10.1155/2014/915172 · 3.17 Impact Factor
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    • "Ecological momentary assessment uses a cell phone platform to gather information about the context and affect within a naturalistic setting [14,39]. This method provides valuable insight into what the participant is doing at an exact moment in time but it does not gather estimates of total time in either active or sedentary behaviors in a given context, as participants are prompted about their current activity multiple times throughout the day [13,39,40]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Purpose: Gathering contextual information (i.e., location and purpose) about active and sedentary behaviors is an advantage of self-report tools such as previous day recalls (PDR). However, the validity of PDR's for measuring context has not been empirically tested. The purpose of this paper was to compare PDR estimates of location and purpose to direct observation (DO). Fifteen adult (18-75 y) and 15 adolescent (12-17 y) participants were directly observed during at least one segment of the day (i.e., morning, afternoon or evening). Participants completed their normal daily routine while trained observers recorded the location (i.e., home, community, work/school), purpose (e.g., leisure, transportation) and whether the behavior was sedentary or active. The day following the observation, participants completed an unannounced PDR. Estimates of time in each context were compared between PDR and DO. Intra-class correlations (ICC), percent agreement and Kappa statistics were calculated. For adults, percent agreement was 85% or greater for each location and ICC values ranged from 0.71 to 0.96. The PDR-reported purpose of adults' behaviors were highly correlated with DO for household activities and work (ICCs of 0.84 and 0.88, respectively). Transportation was not significantly correlated with DO (ICC = -0.08). For adolescents, reported classification of activity location was 80.8% or greater. The ICCs for purpose of adolescents' behaviors ranged from 0.46 to 0.78. Participants were most accurate in classifying the location and purpose of the behaviors in which they spent the most time. This study suggests that adults and adolescents can accurately report where and why they spend time in behaviors using a PDR. This information on behavioral context is essential for translating the evidence for specific behavior-disease associations to health interventions and public policy.
    International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity 02/2014; 11(1):12. DOI:10.1186/1479-5868-11-12 · 4.11 Impact Factor
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    • "In addition, some studies demonstrated that addictive behaviors such as smoking [18,19] and alcohol consumption [20,21] are related to the fluctuations in psychological states, e.g., positive/ negative affect and craving. Furthermore, the associations of momentary psychological states with self-reported physical activity were demonstrated [22,23]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Computerized ecological momentary assessment (EMA) is widely accepted as a "gold standard" method for capturing momentary symptoms repeatedly experienced in daily life. Although many studies have addressed the within-individual temporal variations in momentary symptoms compared with simultaneously measured external criteria, their concurrent associations, specifically with continuous physiological measures, have not been rigorously examined. Therefore, in the present study, we first examined the variations in momentary symptoms by validating the associations among self-reported symptoms measured simultaneously (depressive mood, anxious mood, and fatigue) and then investigated covariant properties between the symptoms (especially, depressive mood) and local statistics of locomotor activity as the external objective criteria obtained continuously. Healthy subjects (N = 85) from three different populations (adolescents, undergraduates, and office workers) wore a watch-type computer device equipped with EMA software for recording the momentary symptoms experienced by the subjects. Locomotor activity data were also continuously obtained by using an actigraph built into the device. Multilevel modeling analysis confirmed convergent associations by showing positive correlations among momentary symptoms. The increased intermittency of locomotor activity, characterized by a combination of reduced activity with occasional bursts, appeared concurrently with the worsening of depressive mood. Further, this association remained statistically unchanged across groups regardless of group differences in age, lifestyle, and occupation. These results indicate that the temporal variations in the momentary symptoms are not random but reflect the underlying changes in psychophysiological variables in daily life. In addition, our findings on the concurrent changes in depressive mood and locomotor activity may contribute to the continuous estimation of changes in depressive mood and early detection of depressive disorders.
    PLoS ONE 09/2013; 8(9):e74979. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0074979 · 3.23 Impact Factor
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