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Minsoo Kang, Youngdeok Kim and David A. Rowe

Background:

This study examined the optimal measurement conditions to obtain reliable peak cadence measures using the accelerometer-determined step data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2005–2006.

Methods:

A total of 1282 adults (> 17 years) who provided valid accelerometer data for 7 consecutive days were included. The peak 1- and 30-minute cadences were extracted. The sources of variance in peak stepping cadences were estimated using Generalizability theory analysis. A simulation analysis was conducted to examine the effect of the inclusion of weekend days. The optimal number of monitoring days to achieve 80% reliability for peak stepping cadences were estimated.

Results:

Intraindividual variability was the largest variance component of peak cadences for young and middle-aged adults aged < 60 years (50.55%–59.24%) compared with older adults aged ≥ 60 years (31.62%–41.72%). In general, the minimum of 7 and 5 days of monitoring were required for peak 1- and 30-minute cadences among young and middle-aged adults, respectively, whereas 3 days of monitoring was sufficient for older adults to achieve the desired reliability (0.80). The inclusion of weekend days in the monitoring frame may not be practically important.

Conclusions:

The findings could be applied in future research as the reference measurement conditions for peak cadences.

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Melody Oliver, Philip John Schluter and Grant Schofield

Background:

Accelerometers are widely used to quantify physical activity (PA) in preschoolers, yet no ‘best practice’ method for data treatment exists. The purpose of this study was to develop a robust method for data reduction using contemporary statistical methods and apply it to preschoolers’ accelerometer data.

Methods:

Children age 2 to 5 years were recruited in Auckland, New Zealand, and asked to wear accelerometers over 7 days. Average daily PA rates per second were derived for participants, estimated using negative binomial generalized estimating equation (GEE) models. Overall participant rates were derived and compared using normal GEE models. Descriptive information for data analyzed were compared with that derived using traditional data inclusion approaches.

Results:

Data were gathered from 78 of the 93 enrolled children over a median of 7 days. Daily PA rates ranged from 1.27 to 17.64 counts per second (median 5.70). Compared with traditional approaches, this method had many advantages, including improved data retention, the computation of a continuous measure, and facilitating powerful multivariable regression analyses, while providing similar descriptive information to existing methods.

Conclusion:

PA rates were successfully calculated for preschoolers’ activity description and advantages of the approach identified. This method holds promise for future use and merits further application and enhancement.

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Lindsay E. Kipp

Purpose:

A signature characteristic of positive youth development (PYD) programs is the opportunity to develop life skills, such as social, behavioral, and moral competencies, that can be generalized to domains beyond the immediate activity. Although context-specific instruments are available to assess developmental outcomes, a measure of life skills transfer would enable evaluation of PYD programs in successfully teaching skills that youth report using in other domains. The purpose of our studies was to develop and validate a measure of perceived life skills transfer, based on data collected with The First Tee, a physical activity-based PYD program.

Method:

In 3 studies, we conducted a series of steps to provide content and construct validity and internal consistency reliability for the life skills transfer survey (LSTS), a measure of perceived life skills transfer.

Results:

Study 1 provided content validity for the LSTS that included 8 life skills and 50 items. Study 2 revealed construct validity (structural validity) through a confirmatory factor analysis and convergent validity by correlating scores on the LSTS with scores on an assessment tool that measures a related construct. Study 3 offered additional construct validity by reassessing youth 1 year later and showing that scores during both time periods were invariant in factor pattern, loadings, and variances and covariances. Studies 2 and 3 demonstrated internal consistency reliability of the LSTS.

Conclusion:

Results from 3 studies provide evidence of content and construct validity and internal consistency reliability for the LSTS, which can be used in evaluation research with youth development programs.

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Karen K. Lee, Candace D. Rutt, Andrea Sharma, Michael Pratt, Judd Flesch, L. Michele Maynard, Keri Kennedy, Peggy Adams and Harold W. Kohl III

Background:

In this article, we examine the possibility of reducing time to conduct traffic volume audits through (1) reducing time for manual traffic counting and (2) using Department of Transportation (DOT) information.

Methods:

In audits of 824 road segments in 2 West Virginia (WV) communities, manual traffic counts were recorded for 1, 2, and 5 minutes in duration. Annual Average Daily Traffic (AADT) was calculated from counts. Available AADT from DOT was also collected. Percent agreement and a weighted kappa were calculated between 5-minute count and 1- and 2-minute count AADT categories and between 5-minute count and DOT AADT categories.

Results:

One- and 2-minute counts produced identical AADT categories as 5-minute counts in 93.4% and 95.0% of segments, respectively. Weighted kappa was 0.79 (95% CI = 0.74–0.85) and 0.85 (95% CI = 0.80–0.89), respectively. Forty-two segments (5.1%) had DOT data.

Conclusions:

DOT AADT was available for a small percentage of road segments assessed. The high agreement between AADT categories produced by 1- and 2-minute counts and 5-minute counts makes it reasonable to consider using 1- or 2-minute manual traffic counts if time or staffing constraints make it necessary. Possible generalizability of this methodology to other communities, particularly larger urban and suburban areas, will require further research.

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Bill Reger-Nash, Adrian Bauman, Linda Cooper, Tien Chey, Kenneth J. Simon, Maria Brann and Kevin M. Leyden

Background:

WV Walks replicated the Wheeling Walks community-wide campaign methodology to promote physical activity.

Methods:

A social marketing intervention promoted walking among insufficiently active 40- to 65-year-olds throughout the television media market in north-central West Virginia. The intervention included participatory planning, an 8-week mass media-based campaign, and policy and environmental activities. Pre and post random-digit-dial cohort telephone surveys were conducted at baseline and immediately postcampaign in intervention and comparison regions.

Results:

The campaign resulted in maximal message awareness in north-central WV and demonstrated a significant increase in walking behavior represented by an absolute shift of 12% of the target population from insufficiently active to active (≥30 minutes, 5 days per week), versus the comparison community (adjusted odds ratio 1.82, CI: 1.05−3.17). Policy and environmental changes were also evident.

Conclusions:

This replication study increases our confidence that the initial effects observed in the Wheeling Walks intervention are generalizable to other similar rural communities.

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Philipe de Souto Barreto, Anne-Marie Ferrandez and Bérengère Saliba-Serre

Background:

Participation bias in exercise studies is poorly understood among older adults. This study was aimed at looking into whether older persons who volunteer to participate in an exercise study differ from nonvolunteers.

Methods:

A self-reported questionnaire on physical activity and general health was mailed out to 1000 persons, aged 60 or over, who were covered by the medical insurance of the French National Education System. Among them, 535 answered it and sent it back. Two hundred and thirty-three persons (age 69.7 ±7.6, 65.7% women) said they would volunteer to participate in an exercise study and 270 (age 71.7 ±8.8, 62.2% women) did not.

Results:

Volunteers were younger and more educated than nonvolunteers, but they did not differ in sex. They had less physical function decline and higher volumes of physical activity than nonvolunteers. Compared with volunteers, nonvolunteers had a worse self-reported health and suffered more frequently from chronic pain. Multiple logistic regressions showed that good self-reported health, absence of chronic pain, and lower levels of physical function decline were associated with volunteering to participate in an exercise study.

Conclusions:

Volunteers were fitter and healthier than nonvolunteers. Therefore, caution must be taken when generalizing the results of exercise intervention studies.

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Lisa K. Sharp, Marian L. Fitzgibbon and Linda Schiffer

Background:

Despite the increased health risks for obese Black women, relatively little research has explored physical activity and nutrition interventions for these women. This article describes the recruitment strategies used in a program designed specifically for obese Black women.

Methods:

Recruitment of Black women age 30 to 65 years with body mass indices between 30 kg/m2 and 50 kg/m2 was completed using in-person recruitment and flyers within 2 miles of the intervention site along with mass e-mails within the sponsoring university system. Medical clearance from a physician was an eligibility requirement because of Institutional Review Board safety concerns.

Results:

Of the 690 women who were screened, 213 (31%) were eligible and randomized. The most common reason for exclusion was failure to return a medical clearance form (n = 167, 39% of ineligible). Different rates of efficiency were noted across recruitment approaches.

Conclusions:

Black women were successfully recruited using in-person community recruitment, e-mail, and community flyers within close proximity to the intervention site. Careful consideration should be given to the advantages and disadvantages of various recruitment strategies that might not generalize across studies.

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Deborah Salvo, Rodrigo S. Reis, Adriano A.F. Hino, Pedro C. Hallal and Michael Pratt

Background:

There is little understanding about which sets of environmental features could simultaneously predict intensity-specific leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) among Brazilians. The objectives were to identify the environmental correlates for intensity-specific LTPA, and to build the best-fit linear models to predict intensity-specific LTPA among adults of Curitiba, Brazil.

Methods:

Cross sectional study in Curitiba, Brazil (2009, n = 1461). The International Physical Activity Questionnaire and Abbreviated Neighborhood Environment Assessment Scale were used. Ninety-two perceived environment variables were categorized in 10 domains. LTPA was classified as walking for leisure (LWLK), moderate-intensity leisure-time PA (MLPA), vigorous-intensity leisure-time PA (VLPA), and moderate-to-vigorous intensity leisure-time PA (MVLPA). Best fitting linear predictive models were built.

Results:

Forty environmental variables were correlated to at least 1 LTPA outcome. The variability explained by the 4 best-fit models ranged from 17% (MLPA) to 46% (MVLPA). All models contained recreation areas and aesthetics variables; none included residential density predictors. At least 1 neighborhood satisfaction variable was present in each of the intensity-specific models, but not for overall MVLPA.

Conclusions:

This study demonstrates the simultaneous effect of sets of perceived environmental features on intensity-specific LTPA among Brazilian adults. The differences found compared with high-income countries suggest caution in generalizing results across settings.

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Jennifer R. O’Neill, Russell R. Pate and Michael W. Beets

Background:

The aims of this study were to describe the physical activity levels of girls during dance classes and to identify factors associated with moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) in those classes.

Methods:

Participants were 137 girls (11 to 18 years-old) enrolled in ballet, jazz, or tap dance classes from 11 dance studios. Participants wore an accelerometer during the selected dance class on 2 separate days. Factors hypothesized to be associated with MVPA were dance style, instructional level, instructor’s experience, percent of class time spent in choreography, and participants’ age, race/ethnicity, BMI-for-age percentile, and years of dance training. Data were analyzed using generalized linear mixed models.

Results:

Girls engaged in 9.8 minutes of MVPA, 6.0 minutes of moderate, 3.8 minutes of vigorous, 39.3 minutes of light, and 10.9 minutes of sedentary behavior per hour of dance class participation. Jazz/tap classes provided more MVPA than ballet classes, and intermediate level classes provided more MVPA than advanced level classes. Girls with more dance training obtained more MVPA than girls with less dance training.

Conclusion:

Dance classes provide valuable opportunities for adolescent girls to be physically active.

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Nabil Ilmane and Jacques LaRue

The aim of this experiment was to explore the behavioral effects of various temporal pressures on the anticipatory postural adjustments (APAs) in a complex task. Eighteen handball players performed a handball direct throw in three conditions of temporal pressure: (1) a reactive condition (RC), the throw was initiated as quickly as possible following a visual stimulus; (2) an anticipation-coincidence condition (AC), by synchronizing the impact of the ball with the passage of a visual mobile on a target; and (3) a self-initiated (SI) throw. The whole-body postural oscillation and the acceleration of the wrist were measured before and during the throwing action. Results showed that the delays between the onsets of the postural and focal activities were significantly different between RC and both the SI and the AC conditions. Movement time, time to peaks (negative and positive), are shorter in the RC, intermediate in the AC, and longer in the SI condition. Variability was significantly larger in AC in comparison with RC and SI. These results support the existence of different control modes triggered by the temporal pressure; they demonstrate that these control modes can be generalized to complex intentional movements such as the throwing skill and to an anticipation-coincidence situation.