Using Objective Physical Activity Measures With Youth: How Many Days of Monitoring Are Needed?

Department of Psychology, San Diego State University, San Diego, California, United States
Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise (Impact Factor: 3.98). 03/2000; 32(2):426-31. DOI: 10.1097/00005768-200002000-00025
Source: PubMed


The purpose of this study was to establish the minimal number of days of monitoring required for accelerometers to assess usual physical activity in children.
A total of 381 students (189 M, 192 F) wore a CSA 7164 uniaxial accelerometer for seven consecutive days. To examine age-related trends students were grouped as follows: Group I: grades 1-3 (N = 92); Group II: grades 4-6 (N = 98); Group III: grades 7-9 (N = 97); Group IV: grades 10-12 (N = 94). Average daily time spent in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) was calculated from minute-by-minute activity counts using the regression equation developed by Freedson et al. (1997).
Compared with adolescents in grades 7 to 12, children in grades 1 to 6 exhibited less day-to-day variability in MVPA behavior. Spearman-Brown analyses indicated that between 4 and 5 d of monitoring would be necessary to a achieve a reliability of 0.80 in children, and between 8 and 9 d of monitoring would be necessary to achieve a reliability of 0.80 in adolescents. Within all grade levels, the 7-d monitoring protocol produced acceptable estimates of daily participation in MVPA (R = 0.76 (0.71-0.81) to 0.87 (0.84-0.90)). Compared with weekdays, children exhibited significantly higher levels of MVPA on weekends, whereas adolescents exhibited significantly lower levels of MVPA on weekends. Principal components analysis revealed two distinct time components for MVPA during the day for children (early morning, rest of the day), and three distinct time components for MVPA during the day for adolescents (morning, afternoon, early evening).
These results indicate that a 7-d monitoring protocol provides reliable estimates of usual physical activity behavior in children and adolescents and accounts for potentially important differences in weekend versus weekday activity behavior as well as differences in activity patterns within a given day.

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    • "Activity counts were summed for each hour that the accelerometer was worn between 7:00 h and 24:00 h to provide a representative picture of daily activity. Criteria for a successful recording were a minimum of 4 days of the week and 1 day of the weekend and more than 600 minutes per day (Colley et al., 2010; Trost et al., 2000). Time periods of at least 10 consecutive minutes of zero counts were considered as periods when the monitor was not worn and, thus, disregarded before analysis. "
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    ABSTRACT: To determine the effects of a school-based exercise intervention programme on cardiovascular risk factors, including body fat (BF), metabolic profile and physical activity (PA) in children with and without individualised dietary counselling approach (IDC and WIDC). Forty-six overweight children from 6-16 years old (25 girls, 54.3%; age = 10.3 ± 2.8) of six schools took part in an 8-month interdisciplinary, school-based intervention programme. All children were engaged in PA classes, but only one group was exposed to individualised counselling. Blood pressure (BP), lipids and lipoproteins, accelerometer-based PA, percentage of body fat (%BF) and trunk fat (%TF) measures were taken before and after intervention. General Linear Model (Repeated Measures ANOVA) adjusted for age, maturation and height change was used to analyse the longitudinal effect of individualised counselling between two evaluations in each group. Favourable changes were observed for %BF, %TF, systolic BP and total cholesterol in the IDC group. Subjects WIDC only increased light and moderate-vigorous PA. In IDC, significant effects for time * group interactions were found for systolic BP, total cholesterol and LDL-cholesterol, indicating that counselling might add favourable changes in these markers, beyond those explained by PA and growth. School-based interventions can contribute to counteracting obesity in youth, particularly when individualised dietary counselling is provided. Therefore, the link between schools and professional counselling should be strengthened to ensure consolidated changes towards healthy behaviours.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2015 · Annals of Human Biology
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    • "By application of standard data reduction wear criteria (≥6–10 h/day and ≥3 and 5 days/week), we found reliability estimates ≥0.75 for all outcome variables, except for SED (min/day). Thus, in terms of ICC, our results were consistent with previous studies that have estimated reliability over one week of measurement in preschool-(Addy et al., 2014; Hinkley et al., 2012; Hislop et al., 2014; Penpraze et al., 2006) and older children (Basterfield et al., 2011; Chinapaw et al., 2014; Janz et al., 1995; Kang et al., 2009; Murray et al., 2004; Ojiambo et al., 2011; Rich et al., 2013; Treuth et al., 2003; Trost et al., 2000), which indicates generalizability to other study samples. Still, studies that have applied several measurement periods over the course of a year have yielded substantially lower reliability estimates in adults (Levin et al., 1999) and children (Mattocks et al., 2007; Wickel and Welk, 2010). "
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    ABSTRACT: Objective: To determine the intra-individual agreement for objectively measured physical activity (PA) and sedentary behavior (SED) over two subsequent weeks in preschool children. Method: Ninety-one children aged 3 to 5 years (49% boys) from three preschools in Sogn og Fjordane, Norway, provided 14 consecutive days of accelerometer data (Actigraph GT3X +) during the autumn of 2014. Week-by-week reliability was assessed using intraclass correlation (ICC), Bland-Altman plots and 95% limits of agreement for different wear time criteria (≥ 6, 8 and 10 h/day and ≥ 3 and 5 days/week). Results: The week-by-week ICC was ≥ 0.75 for all variables across all wear criteria applied, except for absolute sedentary time (ICC 0.61-0.81). Using a ≥ 8 h/day and ≥ 3 days/week criterion (n = 78), limits of agreement were ± 209.5 cpm for overall PA, ± 68.6 min/day for SED, ± 43.8 min/day for light PA, ± 20.2 min/day for moderate-to-vigorous PA, and ± 55.9 min/day for light-to-vigorous PA, equaling 1.0-1.6 standard deviation units. Conclusion: Considerable week-by-week variability was found for all variables. Researchers need to be aware of substantial intra-individual variability in accelerometer-measurements and take necessary actions according to the hypothesis under study, as noise in any measurement will preclude researchers' ability to arrive at valid conclusions in epidemiology.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2015
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    • "Wehavepresentedcross-sectionalphysicalactivity datacollectedfromJirelchildrenandadolescentsovera 7-yearperiod.Datapresentedherearecross-sectional andwerereducedbyusingthefirstdatacollectionperiod foreachparticipant.Datawerefurtherreducedtoinclude onlyparticipantswhohadafullsixdaysofdatacollection (includingaSaturday)andexcludedanyindividualswho removedtheaccelerometerformorethan60minutesor whosedevicesufferedmalfunction.Researchdesignfora projectsuchasthisisimportantbecausefactorssuchas choiceofaccelerometer,epochlength,anddurationof monitoringinfluencetheresults(Trostetal.,2000).We choseActicalaccelerometersbecausetheirsturdywater- proofcasingallowedparticipantstowearthedevice24 hoursaday,evenduringbathingorswimming.Thiselim- inatedtheneedforouryoungparticipantstoremoveand thenremembertoreplacetheaccelerometer.Wechosethe 15-secondepochlengthbecausechildren'sactivityisoften characterizedbyshortburstsofphysicalactivity(Bailey etal.1995;Baquetetal.,2007;Bermanetal.,1998).This Fig.3.Percentageof(a)maleand(b)femaleparticipantsthat meetrecommended60minutesdailyMVPAthresholdonschooldays andSaturdays,arestuntedorseverelystunted("stunted"),andare wastedorseverelywasted("wasted"). "
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    ABSTRACT: We report cross-sectional, objectively measured physical activity data for 399 children and adolescents aged 6 to 18 years. We evaluated physical activity of children and adolescents, considered time spent in each activity intensity category, and explored the impact of growth disruption (stunting and wasting) on physical activity patterns. Participants wore an Actical (Mini-Mitter, Bend, OR) omnidirectional accelerometer for one week as part of their annual visit to the Jiri Growth Study. The percentage of time spent in standard activity intensities were computed using standard metabolic equivalents (METS) cutpoints and compared by chronological age, sex, and school versus non-school days. Primary findings include (1) children are more active on non-school days and adolescents are more active during the school week; (2) Jirel children do not exhibit the reduction in physical activity that most Western populations experience during the transition from childhood to adolescence; and (3) Jirel children and adolescents routinely meet the suggested one hour/day MVPA threshold; (4) Stunting is prevalent and factors leading to this growth disruption may contribute to the amount of time in sedentary or light physical activity. We report child and adolescent physical activity patterns from the Jirel population of eastern Nepal. In this rural context, children and adolescents are more active than populations reported from Western contexts. This key finding has important biomedical implications for the maintenance of healthy body composition, skeletal health, and other health traits. Am. J. Hum. Biol., 2015. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2015 · American Journal of Human Biology
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