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Comparison of surveys used to measure physical activity

journal contribution
posted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 authored by W Brown, T Chey, A Bauman, S Trost, William MummeryWilliam Mummery
Objective: To compare the level of agreement in results obtained from four physical activity (PA) measurement instruments that are in use in Australia and around the world. Methods: 1,280 randomly selected participants answered two sets of PA questions by telephone, 428 answered the Active Australia (AA) and National Health Surveys, 427 answered the AA and CDC Behavioural Risk Factor Surveillance System surveys (BRFSS), and 425 answered the AA survey and the short international Physical Activity Questionaaire (IPAQ. Results: Among the three pairs of survey items, the difference in mean total PA time was lowest when the AA and NHS items were asked (difference=24) (SE:17) minutes, compared with 144 (SE:21) mins for AA/BRFSS and 406 (SE:27) mins for AA/IPAQ). Correspondingly, prevalence estimates for 'sufficiently active' were similar for AA and NHS (56% and 55% respectively), but about 10% higher when BRFSS data were used, and about 25% higher when the IPAQ items were used, compared with the estimates from the AA survey. Conclusions: The findings clearly demonstrate that there are large differences reported in PA times and hence in prevalence estimates of 'sufficient activity' from these four measures. Implications: It is important to consistently use the same survey for population monitoring purposes. As the AA survey has now been used three times in national surveys, its continued use for population surveys is recommended so that trend data over a longer period of time can be established.

Funding

Other

History

Volume

28

Issue

2

Start Page

128

End Page

134

Number of Pages

7

eISSN

1753-6405

ISSN

1326-0200

Location

Curtin

Publisher

Public Health Association of Australia

Language

en-aus

Peer Reviewed

Yes

Open Access

No

External Author Affiliations

Faculty of Arts, Health and Sciences; School of Human Movement Studies; School of Public Health and Community Medicine;

Era Eligible

Yes

Journal

Australian and New Zealand journal of public health.