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Summer Dawn DeBastiani, Dianna D. Carroll, Melissa Cunningham, Sarah Lee and Janet Fulton

Background:

To measure parental awareness of government physical activity guidelines and knowledge of the amount of physical activity recommended for youth (ie, 60 minutes per day, 7 days per week) as specified in the 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans.

Methods:

A cross-sectional national sample of adults responded to physical activity guideline questions added to the HealthStyles survey in 2009 (n = 1552). The prevalence of parents aware of government physical activity guidelines and knowledgeable of the youth physical activity guideline, specifically, was estimated overall and by parental demographic characteristics (sex, education, income level, race/ethnicity, age group, marital status) and body mass index.

Results:

In 2009, 34.8% of parents reported being aware of physical activity guidelines, and 9.7% were knowledgeable of the amount of physical activity recommended for youth.

Conclusions:

Many parents lack awareness and knowledge of the youth physical activity guidelines. The low prevalence estimates suggest the 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans has not been effectively disseminated. These results may also indicate a need for effective communication strategies to educate and inform parents, an important influencer of children’s health behaviors.

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Pedro Curi Hallal and Fernando Vinholes Siqueira

Background:

Physical inactivity is now a public health priority because of the high rates of inactivity observed worldwide. Achievement of physical activity guidelines could be attained with vigorous, moderate, or both activities combined. Our aim was to explore the prevalence and correlates of compliance with vigorous physical activity guidelines (CVAG).

Methods:

Cross-sectional population-based survey in Pelotas, a southern Brazilian city, including 3182 adults (≥ 20 years). The short version of the International Physical Activity Questionnaire was applied by face-to-face interviews. CVAG was defined as at least 60 min/wk of vigorous activity.

Results:

Only 29% of the subjects achieved the vigorous activity threshold. Women, older adults, individuals with low BMI (< 18.5 kg/m2) or obese (≥ 30 kg/m2) were less likely to present CVAG. Compliance with moderate activity guidelines was associated with a higher likelihood of CVAG.

Conclusions:

Concurrent promotion of moderate and vigorous physical activities is warranted in terms of public health.

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Melissa C. Kay, Dianna D. Carroll, Susan A. Carlson and Janet E. Fulton

Background:

To estimate the proportion of U.S. adults aware and knowledgeable of the 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans.

Methods:

Analysis is based on a cross-sectional national sample of adults in the 2009 (n = 4281) HealthStyles survey. We estimated the prevalence of adults who reported awareness of government physical activity guidelines and who were knowledgeable of the currently recommended moderate-intensity physical activity guideline (ie, 150 minutes per week) from the 2008 Guidelines.

Results:

In 2009, the percent of adults who reported being aware of government physical activity (PA) guidelines was 36.1%. The percent of adults knowledgeable of the moderate-intensity physical activity guideline was less than 1% (0.56%).

Conclusions:

Most U.S. adults lack sufficient awareness and knowledge of the 2008 Guidelines, putting them at risk for failure to meet them. The nation needs more effective communication strategies to translate and disseminate PA guidelines.

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Ruth Miller and Wendy Brown

Purpose:

The aims of this study were to investigate the relationships and agreement between average number of steps taken per day and compliance with Australian physical activity guidelines in a sample of working Australian adults.

Methods:

One hundred-eighty-five adults wore a pedometer and recorded the number of steps taken each day for 7 d. On the 8th day, they completed a self-report survey that asked about frequency and duration of different activities during the previous week.

Results:

The average number of steps per day was 8543 (standard deviation = 2466) for men (n = 74) and 9093 (2926) for women (n = 111; no significant difference). Just over half the men (53%) and 45% of the women met the current national physical activity guidelines (no significant difference). Average number of steps per day was higher in those who met the guidelines [9547 (2655), n = 89] than in those who did not [8220 (2702), n = 96; P < 0.0001]. In general, the level of agreement between the 2 measures was only moderate. There was, however, better agreement between the 2 measures in women (Spearman’s ρ = 0.35; % agreement 67.5%; κ = 0.33, P < 0.0001) than in men (ρ = 0.21; % agreement 52.7%; κ = 0.08, NS).

Conclusions:

This study provides an indication of average daily step counts among adults who do and do not meet physical activity guidelines and some evidence on which to base appropriate “step targets” that might be recommended for health benefits for adults.

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Zhen-Bo Cao, Taewoong Oh, Nobuyuki Miyatake, Kazuyo Tsushita, Mitsuru Higuchi and Izumi Tabata

Background:

This study aimed to determine the optimal number of steps per day needed to meet the current physical activity guidelines in a large population sample of Japanese adults.

Methods:

An accelerometer-based activity monitor (Kenz Lifecorder) was used to simultaneously measure moderate-to-vigorous intensity physical activity (MVPA) and step counts in 940 Japanese adults (480 women) aged 20 to 69 years. The step count per day equivalents to 2 different physical activity recommendations (23 MET-h/wk and 150 min/wk of MVPA) were derived using linear regression analysis and receiver operating characteristic (ROC) methodology.

Results:

Linear regression analysis showed that daily step counts correlated with weekly PAEE (r = .83) and daily minutes of MVPA (r = .83). Linear regression analysis also showed that 23 MET-h/wk of MVPA is equivalent to 11,160 steps/d, and 150 min/wk of MVPA is equivalent to 7716 steps/d. ROC analysis yielded similar findings: 10,225 steps/d are required to accumulate ≥ 23 MET-h/wk of MVPA and 7857 steps/d are needed to meet the recommendation of ≥ 150 min/wk of MVPA.

Conclusions:

The findings suggest that 10,000 to 11,000 and 7700 to 8000 steps/d represent the optimal thresholds for accumulating ≥ 23 MET-h/wk of MVPA and ≥ 150 min/wk of MVPA, respectively, for Japanese adults.

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Shirley N. Bryan and Peter T. Katzmarzyk

Background:

Physical activity is associated with a reduced risk of chronic disease. This study describes the relationship between meeting the guidelines for physical activity described in Canada’s Physical Activity Guide and heart disease, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, obesity, and low levels of general health.

Methods:

Leisure-time energy expenditure (LTEE) was calculated from leisure-time physical activities reported by adults who participated in the 2007 Canadian Community Health Survey. Respondents were classified as meeting the guidelines for physical activity or not, and were stratified by sex into quartiles of LTEE. Logistic regression was used to determine the odds for all conditions associated with not meeting the guidelines and by quartile of LTEE, adjusting for covariates.

Results:

The odds of type 2 diabetes, obesity, and fair/poor health were significantly higher among those not meeting the guidelines for both sexes and for high blood pressure among women. Significantly higher odds were seen between the lowest and highest quartiles of LTEE for type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure and across all quartiles for obesity and fair/poor health for both sexes.

Conclusions:

Canadian adults meeting the physical activity guidelines have lower odds of chronic diseases and fair/poor health than those not meeting the guidelines.

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Latetia V. Moore, Janet Fulton, Judy Kruger and Judith McDivitt

Background:

We estimated percentages of US adults (≥18 years) who knew that prior federal physical activity (PA) guidelines call for a minimum of 30 minutes of moderate-intensity PA most days(≥5)/week using 2003 to 2005 HealthStyles, an annual mail survey.

Methods:

10,117 participants identified “the minimum amount of moderate-intensity PA the government recommends to get overall health benefits.” Response options included 30/≥5, 20/≥3, 30/7, and 60/7 (minutes/days per week), “none of these,” and “don’t know.” The odds of correctly identifying the guideline was modeled by participant sex, age, race/ethnicity, income, education, marital status, body mass index, physical activity level, and survey year using logistic regression.

Results:

25.6% of respondents correctly identified the guideline. Women were 30% more likely to identify the guideline than men (Odds Ratio [95% Confidence Limits] (OR) = 1.28 [1.15, 1.44]). Regular PA was positively associated with identifying the guideline versus inactivity (OR = 2.08 [1.73, 2.50]). Blacks and those earning <$15,000 annually were 24% to 32% less likely to identify the guideline than whites and those earning >$60,000, respectively.

Conclusions:

Most adults did not know the previous moderate-intensity PA recommendation, which indicates a need for effective communication strategies for the new 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Adults.

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Kerem Shuval, Xia Si, Binh Nguyen and Tammy Leonard

Background:

Behavioral economics studies have found that individuals with more patient time preferences (ie, greater willingness to forgo current costs for future benefits) are more likely to save money. Although research has observed significant relationships between time preferences and health-promoting behaviors, scant evidence exists with physical activity as an outcome.

Methods:

We examined the association between monetary saving behaviors and physical activity among adults of low-income who reside in an urban community. Specifically, we assessed the relationship between saving behaviors (checking/saving account, monthly savings, and planning family finances), and future orientation to physical activity as a dichotomous (meeting guidelines) and continuous (total and domain specific) endpoint.

Results:

In multivariable regression, being future-oriented and having a checking/saving account were related to a 1.3 and 2.1 times higher (respectively) likelihood of meeting physical activity guidelines (P < .05). When examining physical activity continuously, all measures were significantly related to leisure-time activity (P < .05).

Conclusions:

Our study findings establish a relationship between future time preferences and increased levels of physical activity among low-income adults. Future research should prospectively explore the efficacy of various schemes that help individuals overcome impatient time preferences to determine a causal relationship.

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Brianne L. Foulon, Valérie Lemay, Victoria Ainsworth and Kathleen A. Martin Ginis

The purpose of this study was to determine preferences of people with spinal cord injury (SCI) and health care professionals (HCP) regarding the content and format of a SCI physical activity guide to support recently released SCI physical activity guidelines. Seventy-eight people with SCI and 80 HCP completed a survey questionnaire. Participants with SCI identified desired content items and their preferences for format. HCP rated the helpfulness of content items to prescribe physical activity. All content items were rated favorably by participants with SCI and useful by HCP. The risks and benefits of activity and inactivity, and strategies for becoming more active, were rated high by both samples. Photographs and separate information for those with paraplegia versus tetraplegia were strongly endorsed. These data were used to guide the development of an SCI physical activity guide to enhance the uptake of physical activity guidelines for people with SCI. The guide was publically released November 11, 2011.

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Stacey E. Aaron, Chris M. Gregory and Annie N. Simpson

Background:

One-third of individuals with stroke report symptoms of depression, which has a negative impact on recovery. Physical activity (PA) is a potentially effective therapy. Our objective was to examine the associations of subjectively assessed PA levels and symptoms of depression in a nationally representative stroke sample.

Methods:

We conducted a cross-sectional study of 175 adults in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2011–2012 cycle. Moderate, vigorous, and combination equivalent PA metabolic equivalent (MET)-minutes per week averages were derived from the Global Physical Activity Questionnaire, and .the 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines/American College of Sports Medicine recommendations of ≥500 MET-minutes per week of moderate, vigorous, or combination equivalent PA were used as cut points. Depression symptoms were measured using the Patient Health Questionnaire-9.

Results:

Meeting moderate PA guidelines resulted in 74% lower odds of having depression symptoms (P < .0001) and 89% lower odds of major symptoms of depression (P = .0003). Meeting vigorous guidelines showed a 91% lower odds of having mild symptoms of depression (P = .04). Participating in some moderate, vigorous, or combination equivalent PA revealed the odds of depression symptoms 13 times greater compared with meeting guidelines (P = .005); odds of mild symptoms of depression were 9 times greater (P = .01); and odds of major symptoms of depression were 15 times greater (P = .006).

Conclusions:

There is a lower risk of developing mild symptoms of depression when vigorous guidelines for PA are met and developing major symptoms of depression when moderate guidelines met. Participating in some PA is not enough to reduce the risk of depression symptoms.