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Helen Elizabeth Brown, Nicola Burton, Nicholas David Gilson and Wendy Brown

Background:

An emerging area of interest in workplace health is presenteeism; the measurable extent to which physical or psychosocial symptoms, conditions and disease adversely affect the work productivity of those who choose to remain at work. Given established links between presenteeism and health, and health and physical activity, presenteeism could be an important outcome in workplace physical activity research. This study provides a narrative review of questionnaires for use in such research.

Methods:

Eight self-report measures of presenteeism were identified. Information regarding development, constructs measured and psychometric properties was extracted from relevant articles.

Results:

Questionnaires were largely self-administered, had 4–44 items, and recall periods ranging from 1 week to 1 year. Items were identified as assessing work performance, physical tolerance, psychological well-being and social or role functioning. Samples used to test questionnaires were predominantly American male employees, with an age range of 30–59 years. All instruments had undergone psychometric assessment, most commonly discriminant and construct validity.

Conclusion:

Based on instrument characteristics, the range of conceptual foci covered and acceptable measurement properties, the Health and Work Questionnaire, Work Ability Index, and Work Limitations Questionnaire are suggested as most suitable for further exploring the relationship between physical activity and presenteeism.

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Natalie Jayne Lander, Lisa Michele Barnett, Helen Brown and Amanda Telford

The purpose of this study was to investigate instruction and assessment of fundamental movement skills (FMSs) by Physical Education (PE) teachers of Year 7 girls. Of 168 secondary school PE teachers, many had received little FMSs professional development, and although most assessed student FMSs proficiency, the quality of assessment was variable. Neither years of experience nor confidence influenced the quality of assessment tools used; however, greater FMSs training improved assessment practice regularity. Teachers more recently out of preservice were more confident in demonstrating FMSs. The results suggest that FMSs education for teachers should be a priority inclusion in both the training of preservice teachers and the ongoing professional development of in-service teachers.

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Gemma Cathrine Ryde, Helen Elizabeth Brown, Nicholas David Gilson and Wendy J. Brown

Background:

Prolonged occupational sitting is related to poor health outcomes. Detailed data on sitting time at desks are required to understand and effectively influence occupational sitting habits.

Methods:

Full-time office employees were recruited (n = 105; mean age 40.9 ± 11.5 years; BMI 26.1 ± 3.9, 65% women). Sitting at the desk and in other work contexts was measured using a sitting pad and ActivPAL for an entire working week. Employees used a diary to record work hours. Time spent at work, sitting at work and at the desk; number of sit to stand transitions at the desk; and number of bouts of continuous sitting at the desk < 20 and > 60 minutes, were calculated.

Results:

Average time spent at work was 8.7 ± 0.8 hours/day with 67% spent sitting at the desk (5.8 ± 1.2 hours/day), and 4% in other workplace settings. On average, employees got up from their desks 3 times/hour (29 ± 13/day). Sitting for more than 60 consecutive minutes occurred infrequently (0.69 ± 0.62 times/day), with most sit to stands (80%; 23 ± 14) occurring before 20 minutes of continual sitting.

Conclusion:

The findings provide highly detailed insights into desk-based sitting habits, highlighting large proportions of time spent sitting at desks, but with frequent interruptions.

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Steven H. Kelder, Grace Goc Karp, Philip W. Scruggs and Helen Brown

Is there anything more important than the health, well-being and education of a nation’s children? This paper takes the position that school is the most important place to educate children about health and to develop lifelong health promoting skills. We believe that health promotion programs and activities are integral to the school’s educational program, not as extracurricular, but as central to school’s educational mission. In this chapter, we highlight the importance of physical education and physical activity as key components of a well-designed coordinated school health program. We also outline the skills that PE teachers must learn to take a leadership role in the school health movement.

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Grace Goc Karp, Philip W. Scruggs, Helen Brown and Steven H. Kelder

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Nicola D. Ridgers, Karen E. Lamb, Anna Timperio, Helen Brown and Jo Salmon

Background: Little is known about whether physical activity compensation occurs. This study experimentally explored the activitystat hypothesis by investigating children’s short-term responses to imposed or restricted physical activity. Methods: A total of 156 children (46 boys; mean age = 11.3 y) from 9 schools wore an ActiGraph accelerometer for 5 days (Monday–Friday) across 2 consecutive weeks. In addition, 145 children (49% boys) simultaneously wore a SenseWear Armband. Schools were randomized to participate in 1 of the 3 experimental conditions that took place on 1 occasion: additional moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity (3 schools), additional light-intensity physical activity (3 schools), or restriction of light-intensity physical activity and moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity (3 schools). Multilevel linear regression models were conducted to examine associations between the day the condition took place and the following day and week (baseline and experiment) for each condition. Results: There was no evidence of a difference between children’s activity levels on the day after the experiment condition compared with their usual activity for that day. Conclusion: The findings suggest that children do not compensate their sedentary time and/or physical activity levels following imposed or restricted physical activity in the short term.

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Natalie J. Lander, Lisa Hanna, Helen Brown, Amanda Telford, Philip J. Morgan, Jo Salmon and Lisa M. Barnett

Purpose:

Competence in fundamental movement skills (FMSs) is positively associated with physical activity, fitness, and healthy weight status. However, adolescent girls exhibit very low levels of fundamental movement skill (FMS) proficiency.

Method:

In the current study, interviews were carried out with physical education teachers to investigate their perspectives of: (i) the importance and relevance of teaching FMSs to Year 7 girls, and (ii) the factors influencing effective FMS instruction.

Results:

There were two major findings in the data: Year 7 was perceived to be a critical period to instruct girls in FMSs; and current teaching practices were perceived to be suboptimal for effective FMS instruction.

Conclusion:

Apparent deficits in current FMS teaching practice may be improved with more comprehensive teacher training (both during physical education teacher education (PETE) and in in-service professional development) in pedagogical strategies, curriculum interpretation, and meaningful assessment.

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Lisa M. Barnett, David Stodden, Kristen E. Cohen, Jordan J. Smith, David Revalds Lubans, Matthieu Lenoir, Susanna Iivonen, Andrew D. Miller, Arto Laukkanen, Dean Dudley, Natalie J. Lander, Helen Brown and Philip J. Morgan

Purpose:

Recent international conference presentations have critiqued the promotion of fundamental movement skills (FMS) as a primary pedagogical focus. Presenters have called for a debate about the importance of, and rationale for teaching FMS, and this letter is a response to that call. The authors of this letter are academics who actively engage in FMS research.

Method:

We have answered a series of contentions about the promotion of FMS using the peer reviewed literature to support our perspective.

Results:

We define what we mean by FMS, discuss the context of what skills can be considered fundamental, discuss how the development of these skills is related to broader developmental health contexts, and recommend the use of different pedagogical approaches when teaching FMS.

Conclusions:

We conclude the promotion of FMS is an important focus in Physical Education (PE) and sport and provide future research questions for investigation.