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M. Renée Umstattd, Stephanie L. Baller, Gina H. Blunt and Michelle L. Darst

Background:

The objective of this pilot study was to examine demographic, health, behavioral, and social cognitive correlates of perceived worksite environmental support for physical activity (PA) in middle-age adults.

Methods:

A convenience sample (N = 173) of University employees in the Southeastern U.S. (mean age = 45) was surveyed using an internet-based questionnaire. Measures included perceived worksite environmental support for PA, self-reported minutes of moderate-to-vigorous PA, self-regulation, self-efficacy for walking transportation, PA social support, health status, and sociodemographic items. Bivariate and hierarchical regression analyses were computed to examine correlates of perceived worksite environmental support for PA.

Results:

Bivariate analyses revealed male gender, self-reported moderate-to-vigorous PA, self-regulation use, self-efficacy for walking transportation, and PA social support from friends and family as independent, positive correlates of perceived worksite environmental support for PA (P ≤ .05). Hierarchical regression analyses revealed self-regulation use and PA social support from friends as independent, positive correlates of perceived worksite environmental support for PA (final model R 2 = 20.30%, P ≤ .0001).

Conclusions:

Although causality cannot be determined, these pilot findings support a social cognitive approach. Further exploration of these relationships is warranted and health educators should consider perceptions of physical and social environments in planning future worksite PA promotion programs.

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M. Renée Umstattd Meyer, Stephanie L. Baller, Shawn M. Mitchell and Stewart G. Trost

Background:

Accelerometers have become one of the most common methods of measuring physical activity (PA). Thus, validity of accelerometer data reduction approaches remains an important research area. Yet, few studies directly compare data reduction approaches and other PA measures in free-living samples.

Objective:

To compare PA estimates provided by 3 accelerometer data reduction approaches, steps, and 2 self-reported estimates: Crouter’s 2-regression model, Crouter’s refined 2-regression model, the weighted cut-point method adopted in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES; 2003–2004 and 2005–2006 cycles), steps, IPAQ, and 7-day PA recall.

Methods:

A worksite sample (N = 87) completed online-surveys and wore ActiGraph GT1M accelerometers and pedometers (SW-200) during waking hours for 7 consecutive days. Daily time spent in sedentary, light, moderate, and vigorous intensity activity and percentage of participants meeting PA recommendations were calculated and compared.

Results:

Crouter’s 2-regression (161.8 ± 52.3 minutes/day) and refined 2-regression (137.6 ± 40.3 minutes/day) models provided significantly higher estimates of moderate and vigorous PA and proportions of those meeting PA recommendations (91% and 92%, respectively) as compared with the NHANES weighted cut-point method (39.5 ± 20.2 minutes/day, 18%). Differences between other measures were also significant.

Conclusions:

When comparing 3 accelerometer cut-point methods, steps, and self-report measures, estimates of PA participation vary substantially.

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M. Renée Umstattd, Stephanie L. Baller, Erin Hennessy, David Hartley, Christina D. Economos, Raymond R. Hyatt, Anush Yousefian and Jeffrey S. Hallam

Background:

Evidence supports the role of physical and social environments in active living, including perception of environment. However, measurement of perceived environments in rural settings is lacking. This study describes the development of the Rural Active Living Perceived Environmental Support Scale (RALPESS).

Methods:

Premised on social ecological and cognitive perspectives, 85 initial items were generated through a literature review and a mixed-methods investigation of “activity-friendly” environments. Items were organized by resource areas—town center, indoor and outdoor physical activity areas, schools, churches, and areas around the home/neighborhood—and submitted for expert panel review. In 2009, a revised questionnaire was disseminated to adolescents, parents, public school staff, and older adults in 2 rural southeastern United States counties. Principal component analysis with varimax rotation was used to explore factor structure (n = 542).

Results:

The final analysis yielded 33 items with 7 factors: 1) church facilities, 2) town center connectivity, 3) indoor areas, 4) around the home/neighborhood, 5) town center physical activity resources, 6) school grounds, and 7) outdoor areas.

Conclusions:

The RALPESS is a valid, internally consistent, and practically useful instrument to measure perceptions of rural environments in the context of physical activity across the lifespan. Confirmatory factor analysis is recommended to validate factor structure.