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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.

Open access

Anne I. Wijtzes, Maïté Verloigne, Alexandre Mouton, Marc Cloes, Karin A.A. De Ridder, Greet Cardon and Jan Seghers

Background:

This 2016 Belgium Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth is the first systematic evaluation of physical activity (PA) behaviors, related health behaviors, health outcomes, and influences thereon, using the Active Healthy Kids Canada grading framework.

Methods:

A research working group consisting of PA experts from both Flanders and Wallonia collaborated to determine the indicators to be graded, data sources to be used, and factors to be taken into account during the grading process. Grades were finalized after consensus was reached among the research working group and 2 stakeholder groups consisting of academic and policy experts in the fields of PA, sedentary behavior, and dietary behavior.

Results:

Eleven indicators were selected and assigned the following grades: Overall PA (F+), Organized Sport Participation (C-), Active Play (C+), Active Transportation (C-), Sedentary Behaviors (D-), School (B-), Government Strategies and Investment (C+), and Weight Status (D). Incomplete grades were assigned to Family and Peers, Community and the Built Environment, and Dietary Behaviors due to a lack of nationally representative data.

Conclusions:

Despite moderately positive social and environmental influences, PA levels of Belgian children and youth are low while levels of sedentary behaviors are high.

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Bronwyn Kay Clark, Takemi Sugiyama, Genevieve N. Healy, Jo Salmon, David W. Dunstan, Jonathan E. Shaw, Paul Z. Zimmet and Neville Owen

Background:

Sedentary behaviors, particularly television viewing (TV) time, are associated with adverse health outcomes in adults, independent of physical activity levels. These associations are stronger and more consistent for women than for men.

Methods:

Multivariate regression models examined the sociodemographic correlates of 2 categories of TV time (≥2 hours/day and ≥4 hours/day); in a large, population-based sample of Australian adults (4950 men, 6001 women; mean age 48.1 years, range 25–91) who participated in the 1999/2000 Australian Diabetes, Obesity, and Lifestyle (AusDiab) study.

Results:

Some 46% of men and 40% of women watched ≥ 2 hours TV/day; 9% and 6% respectively watched ≥ 4 hours/day. For both men and women, ≥2 hours TV/day was associated with less than tertiary education, living outside of state capital cities, and having no paid employment. For women, mid and older age (45−64 and 65+) were also significant correlates of ≥2 hours TV/day. Similar patterns of association were observed in those viewing ≥4 hours/day.

Conclusions:

Prolonged TV time is associated with indices of social disadvantage and older age. These findings can inform the understanding of potential contextual influences and guide preventive initiatives.

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Steven T. Johnson, Clark Mundt, Weiyu Qiu, Allison Soprovich, Lisa Wozniak, Ronald C. Plotnikoff and Jeffrey A. Johnson

Objective:

To determine the effectiveness of an exercise specialist led lifestyle program for adults with type 2 diabetes in primary care.

Methods:

Eligible participants from 4 primary care networks in Alberta, Canada were assigned to either a lifestyle program or a control group. The program targeted increased daily walking through individualized daily pedometer step goals for the first 3 months and brisk walking speed, along with substitution of low-relative to high-glycemic index foods over the next 3 months. The outcomes were daily steps, diet, and clinical markers, and were compared using random effects models.

Results:

198 participants were enrolled (102 in the intervention and 96 in the control). For all participants, (51% were women), mean age 59.5 (SD 8.3) years, A1c 6.8% (SD 1.1), BMI 33.6 kg/m2 (SD 6.5), systolic BP 125.6 mmHg (SD 16.2), glycemic index 51.7 (4.6), daily steps 5879 (SD 3130). Daily steps increased for the intervention compared with the control at 3-months (1292 [SD 2698] vs. 418 [SD 2458] and 6-months (1481 [SD 2631] vs. 336 [SD 2712]; adjusted P = .002). No significant differences were observed for diet or clinical outcomes.

Conclusions:

A 6-month lifestyle program delivered in primary care by an exercise specialist can be effective for increasing daily walking among adults with recently diagnosed type 2 diabetes. This short-term increase in daily steps requires longer follow-up to estimate the potential impact on health outcomes.

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Larissa True, Ali Brian, Jackie Goodway and David Stodden

Motor competence is associated with psychological and physical health outcomes. A reciprocal relationship between motor competence and perceptions of physical competence exists, but the developmental trajectory of the motor competence/perceived competence relationship is not well understood. Standardized assessments take a product- or process-oriented approach, but research concerning the motor competence/perceived competence relationship is limited to using process-oriented assessments. It is unknown whether boys and girls use product and process information differentially in the development of perceived competence. Children (N = 411) were aggregated into age groups. Perceived competence and product and process aspects of motor competence were assessed. Older children were more skillful than younger children but reported lower perceived competence. The motor competence/perceived competence association increased for both motor competence measures across age groups. Girls demonstrated stronger associations between process measures of motor competence and perceived competence, while boys indicated stronger associations between product measures of motor competence and perceived competence. When both motor competence measures were used to predict perceived competence, more variance in perceived competence was explained, compared with using independent predictors. The strength of the prediction increased across age groups, indicating that motor competence is a stronger predictor of perceived competence in older children.

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Shigeru Inoue, Yumiko Ohya, Catrine Tudor-Locke, Nobuo Yoshiike and Teruichi Shimomitsu

Background:

Pedometers are becoming widely accepted for physical activity measurement. To use step data effectively, an index which categorizes steps/day by < 5000, ≥ 5000, ≥ 7500, ≥ 10,000, and ≥ 12,500 steps/day has been previously proposed. However, evidence is insufficient to validate this index compared with health outcomes. This study examined the association of steps/day categories with cardiovascular (CVD) risk.

Methods:

Cross-sectional data from the National Health and Nutrition Survey of Japan 2006, including 1166 men and 1453 women aged 40–64 years, were analyzed to calculate odds ratios (OR) for having CVD risk including overweight/obesity, blood pressure, high density lipoprotein cholesterol, hemoglobin A1c, and clustered risk factors by steps/day categories.

Results:

Among men, inverse gradient associations between steps/day categories and CVD risk (overweight/obesity, blood pressure, HbA1c, and clustered risk factors) were observed. Among women, those taking ≥ 5000 steps/day had substantially lower risk of overweight/obesity and high blood pressure compared with those taking < 5000 steps/day. However, additional decreases of OR by taking more steps were modest among women.

Conclusions:

CVD risk was generally lower with higher steps/day categories. Given the limitations of cross-sectional design, further studies, especially using longitudinal designs, are needed to precisely calibrate the association between steps/day and CVD risk.

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Brad Donohue, Yulia Gavrilova, Marina Galante, Elena Gavrilova, Travis Loughran, Jesse Scott, Graig Chow, Christopher P. Plant and Daniel N. Allen

Athletes experience unique stressors that have been indicated to compromise their mental wellness and sport performance, yet they underutilize mental health services. Indeed, very few mental health interventions for athletes have been developed to fit sport culture, and well-controlled mental health outcome research in athlete populations is warranted. In this randomized controlled trial, a sport specific optimization approach to concurrent mental health and sport performance (The Optimum Performance Program in Sports; TOPPS) was examined. Seventy-four collegiate athletes (NCAA = 42; club = 11; intramural = 21) formally assessed for mental health diagnostic severity were randomly assigned to TOPPS or campus counseling/psychological services as usual (SAU) after baseline. Dependent measures assessed general mental health, mood, mental health factors affecting sport performance in training, competition and life outside of sports, days using substances, sexual risk behaviors, happiness in relationships, relationships affecting sport performance, and contributions of relationship to sport performance. Intent to treat repeated measures analyses indicated that participants in TOPPS consistently demonstrated better outcomes than SAU up to 8-months post-randomization and for mental health/substance use measures, particularly when diagnostic criteria were most severe. Recommendations are provided in light of the results to assist sport-specific mental health intervention development and implementation within athlete populations.

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Hannah M. Badland, Rosanna Keam, Karen Witten and Robin Kearns

Background:

Public open spaces (POS) are recognized as important to promote physical activity engagement. However, it is unclear how POS attributes, such as activities available, environmental quality, amenities present, and safety, are associated with neighborhood-level walkability and deprivation.

Methods:

Twelve neighborhoods were selected within 1 constituent city of Auckland, New Zealand based on higher (n = 6) or lower (n = 6) walkability characteristics. Neighborhoods were dichotomized as more (n = 7) or less (n = 5) socioeconomically deprived. POS (n = 69) were identified within these neighborhoods and audited using the New Zealand-Public Open Space Tool. Unpaired 1-way analysis of variance tests were applied to compare differences in attributes and overall score of POS by neighborhood walkability and deprivation.

Results:

POS located in more walkable neighborhoods have significantly higher overall scores when compared with less walkable neighborhoods. Deprivation comparisons identified POS located in less deprived communities have better quality environments, but fewer activities and safety features present when compared with more deprived neighborhoods.

Conclusions:

A positive relationship existed between presence of POS attributes and neighborhood walkability, but the relationship between POS and neighborhood-level deprivation was less clear. Variation in neighborhood POS quality alone is unlikely to explain poorer health outcomes for residents in more deprived areas.

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Olga Sarmiento, Andrea Torres, Enrique Jacoby, Michael Pratt, Thomas L. Schmid and Gonzalo Stierling

Background:

The Ciclovía-Recreativa is a free, community-based program in which streets are closed temporarily to motorized transport, allowing access to walkers, runners, rollerbladers, and cyclists only. We assessed existing information about the Ciclovía as a public health strategy and proposed next steps for research and public health practice.

Methods:

We conducted a systematic search of peer-reviewed and other literature, which was complemented by expert interviews and consultation.

Results:

We reviewed 38 Ciclovías from 11 countries. Most programs (84.2%) take place in urban settings. The programs range from 18−64 events per year (54 ± 24.6; 52 [mean ± standard deviation; median]) with events lasting from 2−12 hours (6 ± 2.4; 6). The length of the streets ranges from 1−121 km (14.6 ± 22.1; 7), and the estimated number of participants per event ranges from 60-1,000,000 persons (61,203 ± 186,668; 3810). Seventy-one percent of the programs include physical activity classes and in 89% of the Ciclovías, the streets are connected with parks.

Conclusions:

Ciclovías have potential for positive public health outcomes, but evidence on their effectiveness is limited. The different stages of new and established programs offer a unique opportunity for transnational studies aimed at assessing their public health impact.

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Kathy Ruble, Susan Scarvalone, Lisa Gallicchio, Catherine Davis and Diane Wells

Background:

: Inadequate physical activity (PA) in childhood cancer survivors may lead to compromised health outcomes. The purpose of this pilot study was to evaluate the feasibility and effect of a PA intervention in childhood cancer survivors ages 8–12 who report < 1 hour of moderate-to-vigorous physical (MVPA) per day.

Methods:

Twenty survivors were randomized to a 6-month group PA intervention or to a control group. A pre/post measure of MVPA was completed by all participants, and a pre/post measure of self-efficacy was completed by the intervention group. Analysis included measures of feasibility, change in percentage of awake time spent in MVPA, self-efficacy scores, and correlations in MVPA and self-efficacy.

Results:

All feasibility parameters were confirmed. Increases in percent of awake time spent in MVPA were seen in 67% of the intervention group and 14% of the control group. A medium effect size (r = 0.55) was calculated for the correlation between change in MVPA and change in total self-efficacy scores; the largest effect size (r = 0.62) was found for the subscale for adequacy.

Conclusions:

Increases in MVPA can be seen in childhood cancer survivors who participate in a group intervention that includes support of self-efficacy.