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Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning—Powerful Yet Underutilized Tools and Algorithms in Physical Activity and Sedentary Behavior Research

Vahid Farrahi and Philip Clare

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A Mobile Health Resistance Training Intervention Using Outdoor Gym Equipment: Process Evaluation of the Ecofit Effectiveness Randomized Controlled Trial

Anna K. Jansson, Mitch J. Duncan, Adrian Bauman, Jordan J. Smith, David R. Lubans, John Attia, and Ronald C. Plotnikoff

Background: Few mobile health resistance-based physical activity interventions have targeted community-dwelling adults. “Ecofit” is a multicomponent intervention that promotes resistance and aerobic activities using smartphone technology, outdoor gyms, and social support. This study evaluated process evaluation outcomes of the ecofit randomized controlled trial: (1) the acceptability and usability of the ecofit smartphone app and app user workouts; (2) perceptions of factors influencing outdoor gym use; and (3) the fidelity, reach, recruitment, and dose received of the ecofit program. Methods: Process data were collected through program evaluation surveys at 3 months, and app usage data were collected via the intervention platform for up to 3 months. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics. Results: The survey was completed by 57% (n = 69) of eligible participants. The majority (93%) believed the app provided them with sufficient information to perform muscle-strengthening activities. Approximately half (51%) agreed that the goal-setting function encouraged them to complete their workouts, and 42% agreed that the self-assessment helped them monitor progress. “Proximity” to outdoor gyms emerged as the most important factor for choosing locations to workout (mean = 5.5, SD = 1.1). Participants logged a median of 5.5 (interquartile range = 19) workouts and 1 (interquartile range = 1) upper- and lower-body muscular fitness self-assessment. Conclusions: The ecofit app provided participants with sufficient skills to perform unsupervised resistance training exercises using mobile health. Only half of the participants regarded self-assessments and goal setting as useful, suggesting a need for modifications to how these are implemented. Mobile health remains a promising delivery platform to promote unsupervised resistance training, although more research is needed to improve uptake.

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The Physical Activity Advice Continuum—A Guide for Physical Activity Promotion in Health Care

Nicole Freene, Stephen Barrett, Emily R. Cox, Jessica Hill, Roger Lay, Jessica Seymour, Kimberley Szeto, and Sjaan R. Gomersall

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Volume 21 (2024): Issue 2 (Feb 2024)

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The Legacy of Dr. Harold W. (Bill) Kohl III From the Perspective of His Mentees

Gregory Knell, Kathryn Burford, Tammy Calise, Erin E. Dooley, Augusto Ferreira de Moraes, Leigh Ann Ganzar, Ho Han, Natalia Heredia, Alejandra Jáuregui, Ashleigh Johnson, Kevin Lanza, Eileen Nehme, Hildi Nicksic, Abiodun O. Oluyomi, Anna Porter, Andrea Ramirez Varela, Michael Robertson, Deborah Salvo, Timothy Walker, and Yuzi Zhang

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Erratum. Patterns and Correlates of Participation in a Weekly Mass Participation Physical Activity Event, parkrun, in Australia, 2011–2020

Journal of Physical Activity and Health

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Physical Activity Dependence on Relative Temperature and Humidity Characteristics in a Young, Insufficiently Active Population: A Weather Typing Analysis

Daniel J. Vecellio, Constantino M. Lagoa, and David E. Conroy

Background: Physical activity (PA) is an important contributor to one’s physical and mental health both acutely and across the lifespan. Much research has done on the ambient environment’s impact on PA; however, these studies have used absolute values of atmospheric measures such as temperature and humidity, which vary spatiotemporally and make comparisons between studies which differ in location or time of year difficult to square with one another. Methods: Here, we employ the Global Weather Type Classification, Version 2, to determine the combined impact of temperature and humidity on PA in a sample of insufficiently active young adults. We conducted secondary analyses of data from a single-group behavioral intervention trial that varied the number of digital messages sent daily. Young adults (n = 81) wore Fitbit Versa smartwatches for a 6-month period sometime between April 2019 and July 2020, and location was tracked using a custom smartphone application. Results: Mixed linear models indicated that, across 8179 person-days, PA was significantly lower on days with humid conditions and significantly higher on warm dry days, though the latter relationship was no longer significant when controlling for timing in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic declaration. Demographic factors did not affect the relationship between weather and PA. Conclusions: Results are a first step in providing additional guidance for encouraging PA in insufficiently active individuals given forecasted daily weather conditions. Future work should examine seasonal variability in the weather type–PA relationship without the influence of a world-altering event influencing results.

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Associations Between Intersecting Sociodemographic Characteristics and Device-Measured Physical Activity Among Children and Adolescents Living in the United States

Denver M.Y. Brown, Bryce Summerville, Stuart J. Fairclough, Gregore I. Mielke, and Richard Tyler

Background: Despite robust evidence demonstrating sociodemographic characteristics may underly some of the disparities in physical activity observed among children and adolescents, the often-overlooked nexus of potential interactions between these characteristics warrants further exploration. This study explored the intersectionality of gender, race/ethnicity, parental education, and household income in relation to device-measured physical activity volume and intensity in a nationally representative sample of US children and adolescents. Methods: Cross-sectional data from 3 cycles of the US National Health and Nutrition Survey (2011–2012; 2012 National Youth Fitness Survey; and 2013–2014) were used. A total of 6116 participants (49% female) between 3 and 17 years of age wore an accelerometer on their nondominant wrist for 7 days. Monitor-independent movement summary units were used to represent physical activity volume and intensity. A Social Jeopardy Index was created to represent increasing levels of intersecting social disadvantages based on combinations of gender, race/ethnicity, parental education, and household income-to-poverty ratio tertiles. Generalized linear regression models were computed. Results: The results showed social disadvantages become increasingly evident among children and adolescents during the most intense 60 minutes of daily physical activity (B = −48.69 [9.94] SE, P < .001), but disparities in total volume were not observed (B = 34.01 [44.96] SE, P = .45). Conclusions: Findings suggest that patterns of physical activity behavior may differ based on intersecting sociodemographic characteristics—more socially disadvantaged children and adolescents appear to accumulate activity at lighter intensities. Collecting contextual information about device-measured physical activity represents an important next step for gaining insight into these sociodemographic differences.

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Validation of the Portuguese Version of the Perceived Physical Literacy Instrument

Aia Boldovskaia, Diogo S. Teixeira, Marlene N. Silva, and Eliana V. Carraça

Background: The Perceived Physical Literacy Instrument (PPLI) has been the most adopted physical literacy instrument designed for adults to date, having been already translated to 5 languages. Still, despite its popularity, there is limited evidence of its psychometric properties. The aim of this study was to translate and adapt cross-culturally the PPLI to the Portuguese language and to analyze the psychometric properties of the Portuguese version in a sample of Portuguese-speaking adults. Methods: The study sample was composed of 434 participants (70% females) with a median age of 25 (18–39) years. Confirmatory factor analysis was used to assess psychometric properties of the scale. In addition, instrument assumptions between sexes through invariance testing were examined. Finally, concurrent validity, test–retest reliability, and test–retest agreement analyses were performed to gather additional evidence. Results: The results of the present study generally supported the measurement model. The 9-item, 3-factor model presented a good fit to the data and adequate construct validity (χ2 = 82.859 [24], P < .001, comparative-fit index = .948, Tucker–Lewis index = .922, standardized root mean square residual = .049, root mean square error of approximation = .075). In addition, the scale presented concurrent validity. Some issues arose with measurement invariance and overtime consistency. Conclusions: Considering the lack of validated instruments, we suggest a fair use of Portuguese version of PPLI to access physical literacy in adults. This study contributes to the validation of the PPLI by providing evidence of its psychometric properties in the Portuguese-speaking adult population and facilitates comparative analysis with previous and future studies utilizing the PPLI instrument.

Open access

Gender Differences in Caregivers’ Attitudes to Risky Child Play in Britain: A Cross-Sectional Study

Andrea D. Smith, Helen F. Dodd, Luiza Ricardo, and Esther van Sluijs

Background: This study examines gender differences in parental attitudes toward risky play for 5- to 11-year-old boys and girls in Britain. Methods: Analyses use data from the cross-sectional, nationally representative British Child Play Survey. Survey respondents were caregivers of primary-school-aged children living in Britain. Parent self-reported their risk tolerance in play via the Tolerance for Risk in Play Scale (TRiPS) and the Risk Engagement and Protection Survey (REPS). The REPS includes subscales that assess caregiver attitudes around “Protection from Injury” (PFI) and “Engagement with Risk” (EWR) in relation to children’s play. Multiple linear regression compared caregiver gender differences in TRiPS, REPS-PFI, and REPS-EWR at the item level, and overall. Associations between child gender and these scales were also examined. Results: Among 1919 caregivers, no significant gender differences emerged in mean TRiPS (P = .72), REPS-EWR (P = .58), and REPS-PFI (P = .34) scores. Activity-specific differences were evident in caregivers’ tolerance for individual risky play activities (15/31 activities). Parents of boys exhibited higher risk tolerance (B = −4.48, P < .01) and willingness for their child to engage in risky play (B = −0.63, P < .01) than parents of girls. Conclusions: While there was no difference between male and female caregivers overall attitudes, gender differences were prominent for specific play activities and attitudes, with male caregivers demonstrating higher tolerance for the riskiest activities. Parents of boys expressed more permissive attitudes toward engagement in risky play. Further work is needed to identify why there is gender-related variation in these attitudes and should be considered in interventions that support parents in enabling adventurous play opportunities for children.