John C Spence

John C Spence
University of Alberta | UAlberta · Faculty of Kinesiology, Sport, and Recreation

PhD

About

354
Publications
101,099
Reads
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13,677
Citations
Additional affiliations
July 2015 - June 2016
University of Alberta
Position
  • Interim Vice Dean
January 2010 - June 2015
University of Alberta
Position
  • Associate Dean (Research)
February 1996 - December 2012
University of Alberta
Position
  • Professor (Full)

Publications

Publications (354)
Article
Parental support is the critical family-level variable linked to child physical activity (PA), yet the antecedents of support are poorly understood, and its relationship with intention is modest. The purpose of this study was to apply a framework designed to evaluate the intention-behavior gap, known as multiprocess action control (M-PAC), to under...
Article
Full-text available
Parental support has been established as the critical family-level variable linked to child physical activity with encouragement, logistical support, and parent-child co-activity as key support behaviors. This study aims to model these parental support behaviors as well as family demographics as mediators of mothers' perceptions of child physical a...
Article
Introduction: Exercise training within the Pulmonary Rehabilitation (PR) context is considered the most effective strategy to reduce Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) symptoms. However, participation in PR and continuing exercise training following program completion is low. Previous research has examined factors related to attendance an...
Article
RÉSUMÉ Cette étude a identifié les facteurs qui influencent la participation à l’activité physique (AP) chez les adultes âgés de milieu rural en Nouvelle-Écosse, et a étudié comment le contexte rural peut influer sur la participation et la promotion de l’AP. Les données ont été recueillies au moyen d’entrevues semi-structurées individuelles avec 2...
Article
The importance of integrated movement behaviours (MB, i.e., physical activity [PA], sedentary behaviour, and sleep) and their interdependence for health has been recently discussed in the literature. The proposition that the amount of time spent in any one of these behaviours may impact the amount of time spent in another is supported by the Activi...
Article
Background App-based strategies are a promising solution to deliver nutrition and exercise interventions during social distancing. With limited RCT data in individuals with chronic disease, further information is required both to determine impact, and to guide delivery. The Heal-Me app is an evidence-based, theoretically informed nutrition and exer...
Article
Background: Obesity interventions for parents of children with obesity can improve children's weight and health. This randomized controlled trial (RCT) evaluated whether a parent-based intervention based on cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) principles was superior to a parent-based intervention based on a psychoeducation program (PEP) in improving...
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This investigation sought to examine physical activity (PA) as a potential determinant of chronic boredom and associated well-being within the context of COVID-related restrictions. A representative sample of U.K. adults ( N = 1,521) completed a survey on June 1, 2020. Bivariate analyses demonstrated that individuals who met guidelines and maintain...
Article
Background Adolescents perceive different barriers for walking versus cycling to school. This study examined whether adolescents’ perceptions of walking and cycling differ by home-to-school distance. Methods Adolescents (n = 1,401; age: 15.1 ± 1.4 years; 55.1% females) completed an online survey about their school travel and perceptions of walking...
Article
The purpose of this study was to examine the content of physical activity inputs in Canadian family physician electronic medical records. Of 1 225 948 patients aged 18–64 years, a sample of 1535 patients’ charts were reviewed. A minority (n = 148; 9.6%) of patients had at least 1 mention of physical activity at any time. Insufficient information ex...
Article
To identify features parents perceived as being relevant for their child’s active play, their own active recreation, and their coactivity. Parents (n = 145, M age = 36.2 years) with preschoolers (M age = 3.9 years) living in Edmonton, Canada were recruited from each of Edmonton’s council wards. Parents reported demographic information and the impor...
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Background In collaboration with building developers, the Housing for Health team is contributing to the design of community-based congregate living facilities to support healthy living in older adults. There may also be opportunities to improve the surrounding neighbourhoods by collaborating with the municipalities where the developments are locat...
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This scoping review summarizes the literature about how ambient (outdoor) air pollution impacts movement behaviours (i.e., physical activity, sedentary behaviour, and sleep), or beliefs about movement behaviours. Of 6552 potential documents, 58 documents and 218 findings were included in the final synthesis. Most studies were from the United States...
Article
Objective To develop and evaluate the reliability of a 24-hour movement behavior questionnaire for physical activity, sedentary behavior, and sleep for youth in South Korea. Design Mixed-methods study using literature review, expert panels, pilot tests, and test-retest reliability. Setting Seoul and Gyeongg-do, South Korea. Participants A conven...
Preprint
Full-text available
Daily life has changed for families due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The aim of this repeated cross-sectional study was to describe movement behaviours in Canadian children and youth six months into the pandemic (T2; October 2020) compared with the start of the pandemic (T1, April 2020). An online survey was distributed to parents ( N = 1568) of child...
Article
Background: Potential income disparities were examined in the (1) awareness and uptake of the Children's Fitness Tax Credit (CFTC), and (2) physical activity (PA) of children from families who did and did not claim the credit in Alberta, Canada in 2012 and 2014. Methods: Secondary analyses of 3 cross-sectional data sets of grade 5 students (10-1...
Article
Aim: This study compared accelerometer-measured physical activity (PA) patterns in adolescents living in diverse urban and rural areas of Otago, New Zealand. Method: Participants (n=377; age: 14.9±1.4 years; 66.8% female; 23 schools) completed an online school travel survey, anthropometry and seven-day PA accelerometer assessment. Participants r...
Article
This study examined the associations of parental movement behaviors (MBs; sleep, stationary time, light-intensity physical activity [LPA], and moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity [MVPA]) and parent–child proximity with preschool-aged children’s MBs. Parent–child MBs and proximity were assessed with Bluetooth-enabled accelerometers. Pa...
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Objective To create a sleep duration classification technique for waist-worn ActiGraph accelerometers in preschool-aged children. Methods Children wore ActiGraph wGT3X-BT accelerometers on their right hip for 7 days (24 h/day). Ground truth nap, sleep, and wake were estimated through visual inspection of accelerometer data, guided by sleep log-she...
Article
Objectives This study examined the impact of the COVID-19 lockdown on the physical activity (PA) of UK adults and potential motivational determinants of such behaviour. Design and methods A survey was conducted with 1,521 UK adults recruited through Prolific.co in early June 2020. Along with demographic information, questions assessed current PA, c...
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Background Accumulating evidence suggests that the built environment is associated with physical activity. The extent to which the built environment may support adherence to physical activity interventions is unclear. The aim of this study was to investigate whether the neighbourhood built environment constrains or facilitates adherence and steps t...
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COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic by the World Health Organization on March 11, 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic and resulting social disruption has left many to struggle with changes to routines and feelings of uncertainty as the impact of the virus continues to unfold. Evidence suggests an increase in symptoms of anxiety, depression, and stress...
Article
Purpose: Sedentary time (ST) and lack of physical activity increase the risk of adverse outcomes for those living with coronary artery disease (CAD). Little is known about how much ST, light physical activity (LPA), and moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) that CAD participants not attending cardiac rehabilitation engage in, the locations...
Article
Background: The ParticipACTION Report Card on Physical Activity for Adults is a knowledge exchange tool representing a synthesis of the literature and data available at the national level. The purpose of this paper is to summarize the results of the inaugural 2019 edition. Methods: Thirteen physical activity indicators, grouped into 4 categories...
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Background Despite national-level initiatives to encourage active transport (AT) in New Zealand since 2005, rates of AT have continued to decline in most parts of the country, with negative impacts on health and the environment. This article describes the development of key policy recommendations for increasing AT in New Zealand. The goal was to es...
Article
Background Home-to-school distances and the need for students to be driven to/from school may limit adolescents' physical activity levels. School choice and school zoning policies can influence rates of active transport to/from school, and traffic volumes during school commuting times. This study aimed to quantify the effects of adolescents' enrolm...
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Background Movement behaviours (e.g., sleep, sedentary behaviour, and physical activity) in isolation have demonstrated benefits to preschool-aged children’s development. However, little is known on the integrated nature of movement behaviours and their relationship to healthy development in this age range. Thus, the objective of this study was to...
Article
Objective The physical activity (PA) sector has an important role to play within the treatment of mental illness (MI). This review aims to summarize the literature examining healthcare professionals’ (HCPs) perceptions related to the PA sector to: 1) develop an understanding of the potential factors influencing collaboration with the PA sector in t...
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Background: Healthy childhood development is fostered through sufficient physical activity (PA; including time outdoors), limiting sedentary behaviours (SB), and adequate sleep; collectively known as movement behaviours. Though the COVID-19 virus outbreak has changed the daily lives of children and youth, it is unknown to what extent related restr...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: Healthy child and youth development is fostered through sufficient physical activity (PA; including time outdoors), limiting sedentary behaviours (SB), and adequate sleep; collectively known as movement behaviours. Though the COVID-19 virus outbreak has changed the daily lives of children and youth, it is unknown to what extent related...
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Objectives School-based daily physical activity (DPA) policies represent a promising intervention for increasing physical activity levels among children. Between 2005 and 2010, five Canadian provinces adopted and implemented DPA policies. This national case study explored facilitators and challenges to developing, adopting and implementing DPA poli...
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Background Parental perceptions towards different modes of transport correlate with adolescents’ mode choice for school trips. Whether parental attitudes differ for walking versus cycling and/or home-to-school distance is unknown. We compared parental perceptions of walking versus cycling to school in adolescents in Dunedin, New Zealand and examine...
Article
Background We evaluated a cohort of 35 children diagnosed with long QT syndrome, catecholaminergic polymorphic ventricular tachycardia, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, or arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy with regard to physical and psychosocial well-being. Material and Methods Patients wore an accelerometer to record their time involve...
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The purpose of this project was to examine the experiences of participants enrolled in a fee assistance program for recreation in Mississauga, Canada. Adults living in low income (N = 24) who were registered with ActiveAssist engaged in individual semi-structured interviews and data were analyzed using thematic content analysis. Benefits associated...
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Objective To propose a new anthropometric index that can be employed to better predict percent body fat (PBF) among young adults and to compare with current anthropometric indices. Design Cross-sectional. Setting All measurements were taken in a controlled laboratory setting in Seoul (South Korea), between 1 December 2015 and 30 June 2016. Parti...
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Context This scoping review examines the literature as it relates to autonomous vehicles and impact on movement behavior (i.e., physical activity, sedentary behavior, and sleep) or mode choice (e.g., public transit), beliefs about movement behavior or mode choice, or impact on environments that may influence movement behavior or mode choice. Evide...
Article
The purpose of this research was to evaluate a population level mass media campaign using implicit and explicit measures of evaluations and to determine if discrepant or summed evaluations were associated with endorsing campaign objectives: that physical activity can improve relationship-related, mind-related, or body-related outcomes. Participants...
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Introduction Natural experiments are considered a priority for examining causal associations between the built environment (BE) and physical activity (PA) because the randomised controlled trial design is rarely feasible. Few natural experiments have examined the effects of walking and cycling infrastructure on PA and active transport in adults, an...
Article
Objective To determine the effects of behaviour change interventions on men’s physical activity (postintervention), sustained change in physical activity behaviour (≥12 months postintervention) and to identify variations in effects due to potential moderating variables (eg, theoretical underpinning, gender-tailored, contact frequency). Design Syst...
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Objective Exercise is an effective modality for the prevention and treatment of chronic conditions and family physicians are the healthcare providers tasked to manage patients’ chronic disease status. However, little is known about the exercise documentation in family-physician records. Therefore, a scoping review was conducted to describe family-p...
Article
Purpose: Children with cardiomyopathy are at risk of heart failure with reduced physical activity (PA) as a cardinal manifestation. Clinical assessment of PA in children is challenging due to the limited validity of subjective reports. The aim of the study was to compare accelerometery measurement with parental report and to identify factors assoc...
Article
Purpose: The financial costs associated with organized sport and recreation programs can act as salient barriers to child and youth participation. Programs that provide financial assistance to parents to support engagement may help alleviate these barriers, however little is known about how these programs actually impact families. This study examin...
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Best practice in mass reach physical activity campaigns includes a role for communities to support the initiative with sustained programs and shorter-term events. The purpose of this paper was to report on an outcome evaluation of ParticipACTION’s 150 Play List, a population-level, year-long, national mass reach campaign that included community eve...
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Objectives Internet-facilitated physical activity interventions are becoming more common. A better understanding about the barriers and facilitators experienced by participants is needed to improve the delivery and effectiveness of these types of interventions. Our study explored perceived individual, social, and physical environment characteristic...
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Background: To explore the prevalence of parental support for meeting the Canadian 24-Hour Movement Guidelines for Children and Youth, identify key interactive support profiles among the four movement behaviors, and investigate subsequent sociodemographic and social cognitive correlates of these profiles. Methods: A sample of Canadian parents (N...
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Objectives This exploratory research examined if breast cancer or heart disease is automatically associated with physical activity compared to fruit and vegetable stimuli; if reading messages about reducing risk of breast cancer or heart disease through physical activity and fruit and vegetable consumption would affect automatic associations; and i...
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Introduction This study examined the levels of utilitarian walking by age and gender and associations between utilitarian walking, meeting global physical activity guidelines, and psychological well-being in a nationally representative sample of South Korean adolescents. Methods The 2016 Korea Youth Risk Behavior Web-based Survey included complete...
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Purpose This study examined the levels and correlates of 24-hour movement behaviors (i.e., physical activity, sedentary time, and sleep), and different patterns of these behaviors in a nationally representative sample of South Koreans aged 12 years and older. This study also examined the sociodemographic correlates of 24-hour movement behaviors str...
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Objectives: To examine how public attributions for the causes and solutions of physical inactivity and individuals' self-identified political orientation are associated with support for different policy actions in addressing physical inactivity. Methods: A secondary data analysis was conducted with a sample of 2,044 Canadian adults. Two sets of 2 X...
Article
Purpose: Examine objectively measured environmental correlates of physical activity and sedentary behavior in toddlers (12-35 mo). Methods: Participants were recruited at immunization appointments in Edmonton, Canada. Physical activity and sedentary time were objectively measured via accelerometers (n = 149). The parents reported screen time and...
Article
The purpose of this community-based participatory research was to explore the physical activity experiences of Northern Aboriginal youth in Canada. Fourteen Aboriginal youth from the ages of 13–19 years participated in interviews (one-on-one or sharing circles), and participant-generated photo-elicitation sharing circles. Five themes representing t...
Article
In the context of rising screen time, only a third of Canadian children are achieving adequate amounts of active play, an important source of physical activity. ParticipACTION, a national not-for-profit organization, created the “Make Room for Play” campaign targeting parents with television advertisements depicting how screen time takes away from...
Article
Background The purpose of this paper was to apply a framework designed to evaluate the intention–behaviour gap, known as multi‐process action control (M‐PAC), to understand parental support for the Canadian 24‐Hour Movement Guidelines for Children and Youth. Method Parents (N = 1,208) of children 5–17 years of age, completed measures of reflective...
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Objectives: Adolescents using active transport (AT) to school have higher levels of physical activity (PA) compared with motorized transport (MT) users. This study compared school day and weekend day PA in adolescents using AT, MT, or combined AT and MT (AT + MT) to travel to school. Methods: Adolescents (n = 314; age: 14.7 ± 1.4 years; 32.8% bo...
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Background The growth and development that occurs in early childhood has long-term implications, therefore understanding the relevant determinants is needed to inform early prevention and intervention. The objectives of the study were to examine: 1) the longitudinal associations of physical activity and sedentary behavior with social skills and 2)...
Article
Objectives In light of a shift to considering the integration of movement behaviors, the purpose of this study was to examine an extended multi-component theory of planned behavior (TPB) framework to predict parent support and parent perceived behavior of the Canadian 24-h movement behaviors in children and youth including light physical activity (...
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Background Ecological models suggest that a strategy for increasing physical activity participation within a population is to reconstruct the “social climate”. This can be accomplished through 1) changing norms and beliefs, 2) providing direct support for modifying environments, and 3) implementing policies to encourage physical activity. Neverthel...
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Background: Mass reach physical activity campaigns are designed to deliver physical-activity related messages to a large population across different media including print, television, radio, and websites. Few evaluations have examined the short-term effects of a mass reach campaign on participants who were engaged with the campaign. The current re...
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Purpose: The brand equity pyramid is a theory that explains how people develop loyalty and an attachment to a brand. The primary objective of this study was to test whether the predictions made by the theory hold when applied to the brand of ParticipACTION, a Canadian non-profit organization that promotes active living. A secondary objective was to...
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Friendships play a significant role in child development and may influence children's physical activity (PA). Using a whole-network approach, this study examined whether school-based friends are more similar in their pedometer-measured PA compared to children who are not friends, and whether these patterns vary by gender, strength of friendship (be...
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Purpose To examine associations between physical activity contexts and health and fitness perceptions among Korean adults and youth. Method Data were from the Korean Survey on Citizens’ Sports Participation in 2015. Korean youth (N = 832; Mage = 14.7) and adults (N = 6719; Mage = 41.3) were included in the hierarchical logistic and linear regressi...