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Bas de Geus, Bart Degraeuwe, Grégory Vandenbulcke, Luc Int Panis, Isabelle Thomas, Joris Aertsens, Yves De Weerdt, Rudi Torfs and Romain Meeusen

Background:

For an accurate estimation of health benefits and hazards of utilitarian cycling, a prospective collection of bicycle usage data (exposure) is fundamental. Individual and environmental correlates are necessary to guide health promotion and traffic safety issues. Firstly, this study aims to report on utilitarian bicycle usage in Belgium, using a prospective data collection in regular adult commuter cyclists. Secondly, the association is explored between the individual variation in bicycle usage and individual and environmental correlates.

Methods:

1187 regular adult cyclists filled out travel diaries prospectively. Multivariate linear regression with Stepwise selection (SMLR) models studied the association between exposure and individual and environmental correlates.

Results:

Higher age and availability of cycle paths have a positive association with bicycle usage to work. Women cycle significant less compared with men, and so do cyclists with ‘poor’ or ‘average’ health. Living in an urban crown (opposed to city center) and living in Flanders (opposed to Brussels or Wallonia) is associated with significantly more cycling.

Conclusions:

Utilitarian cycling is related to regional differences, level of urbanization of the place of residence, availability of bicycle paths, and gender. These findings are useful in estimating health benefits and hazards of utilitarian cycling among regular Belgian cyclists.

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Charles F. Morgan, Thomas L. McKenzie, James F. Sallis, Shelia L. Broyles, Michelle M. Zive and Philip R. Nader

We examined associations of demographic/biological, psychological, social, and environmental variables with two different measures (self-reported and accelerometer) of physical activity (PA) in Mexican-American (56 boys; 64 girls) and European-American (49 boys; 45 girls) children (mean age = 12.1 years). Among 32 potential correlates, 4 gender and 16 ethnic differences were found. Percent of variance explained from 3% to 24% for self-reported PA and from 7% to 16% for accelerometer-measured PA. Physical self-perception was the only variable with a significant association across all subgroups and both measures. Less favorable levels of psychosocial variables among Mexican-Americans may explain ethnic differences in PA.

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Joseph T. Walker, Andrew J. Mowen, William W. Hendricks, Judy Kruger, James R. Morrow Jr. and Kelly Bricker

Background:

The Physical Activity in Parks Setting (PA-PS) instrument is a series of survey questions designed by a consortium of public health and leisure research scholars to gauge park-based physical activity for use in civilian, noninstitutionalized populations. This paper introduces this self-reported instrument and provides test-retest reliability results.

Methods:

Data to test the instrument reliability were collected during 2 waves in 2008 through the California Outdoor Recreation Opinions and Attitudes Telephone Survey. To conduct test-retest reliability we examined the agreement between 100 randomly reselected respondents from the first wave of respondents (n = 2004) that answered the same survey within 21 to 30 days of the initial administration.

Results:

The reliability of measures that categorized individual park use and visitation with others provided moderate levels of agreement (Kappa = 0.44 to 0.64). Questions about park features, facilities and amenity use, and specific park-based physical activity participation were of fair to substantial agreement (Kappa = 0.21 to 0.90) depending on the item in question.

Conclusion:

The results from these test-retest reliability analyses suggest the PA-PS items were reliable and should be considered in future population surveys that assess park visitation patterns and park-based physical activity levels.

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Emmanouil Georgiadis and Irini Papazoglou

World Anti-Doping Association (WADA) is responsible for doping-free sporting contests and is the only sporting body posing relevant competition sanctions. While doping relates to various controversial attitudes and beliefs proposed in the past, the confirmation of a competition ban following a doping violation has many negative connotations for the lives of the athletes. This can elicit multiple significant and far-reaching implications for them and their close ones. Aiming to better understand these implications in an athlete’s life, 5 Greek male and female athletes having recently received a competition ban after a doping violation were interviewed. Qualitative analysis of the data showed that many important psychological, social, and financial implications follow such a sanction. Most importantly, these consequences may even contribute to indications of poor mental and physical health. Discussion of the results provides suggestions for the alleviation of the negative consequences following an involuntary sporting career pause or termination.

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Kate Giles and Alison L. Marshall

Background:

One- to two-week test–retest reliability and construct validity (against pedometer step counts) of the CHAMPS physical activity questionnaire were evaluated in older Australian adults.

Methods:

Participants (n = 100, age >65 years) were invited to complete CHAMPS by mail. Spearman correlation coefficients are reported for physical activity constructs time (min/wk) and sessions per week for walking, moderate-, and vigorous-intensity activity and total physical activity. Correct classification of participants as meeting physical activity recommendations was assessed using percent agreement and kappa statistics.

Results:

Seventy-three participants completed CHAMPS at T1; 54 provided repeat data (T2). Sixty percent of the participants provided complete data. Good to excellent test– retest reliability was observed for all the physical activity constructs (r s = .70 to .89 for sessions/wk and r s = .65 to .75 for min/wk). Agreement between proportions classified as meeting recommendations at T1 and T2 was good (79%; kappa = 0.55). Fair to low validity coefficients were observed between steps and T1 CHAMPS walking and total activity sessions/wk (r s = .57 and r s = .52), and min/wk (r s = .40 and r s = .21).

Conclusions:

Mailed self-complete CHAMPS data provided reliable and valid estimates of physical activity in older Australian adults. Observed measurement coefficients were comparable to those reported in previous evaluations of CHAMPS. Further work is required to identify strategies to prevent data loss.

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Maea Hohepa, Robert Scragg, Grant Schofield, Gregory S. Kolt and David Schaaf

Background:

Youth display suboptimal levels of physical activity and sedentary behaviors. Few studies have examined the existence of the “displacement hypothesis” or the effect of parental strategies on activity behaviors during the after-school period.

Methods:

A total of 3471 students (12–18 years old) completed a self-report survey that assessed after-school physical activity and television (TV) use and perceived parental strategies (ie, encouragement to be active, TV-viewing rules). Participants were grouped into 4 activity groups: high TV/low active, high TV/active, low TV/low active, or low TV/active. Descriptive statistics and nominal logistic-regression analyses were conducted.

Results:

Compared with students who watched less than 1 h of TV, participants who watched ≥4 h of TV were half as likely to be active after school (≥4 h; adjusted odds ratio 0.51, 95% CI .40–.65). Compared with the low TV/active group, the other activity groups were at least 1.28 times more likely to have parents that provided only 1 parental strategy (encouragement for activity or TV rules) and up to 4.7 times more likely to have parents that provided neither strategy.

Discussion:

Sedentary behaviors are associated with displacement of active pursuits. Parental strategies exert a strong influence on after-school behaviors of high school students.

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Joseph T. Ciccolo, Kelley K. Pettee Gabriel, Caroline Macera and Barbara E. Ainsworth

Background:

Self-rated health (SRH) is a predictor of several clinical outcomes, including mortality. Physical activity is associated with SRH; however, the specific role that resistance training (RT) plays in this relationship is unknown. We explored the independent association between self-reported RT and SRH in a cross-sectional survey (National Physical Activity and Weight Loss Study; NPAWLS) conducted by the University of South Carolina Prevention Research Center in 2002.

Method:

Subjects were 9651 men and women (mean age 46.5 yrs) classified as having high or low SRH; and they were categorized into 2 groups: (1) meeting nationally recommended levels for RT (≥2 days/week); (2) not meeting levels (<2 days/week or no RT).

Results:

Meeting national recommendations was associated with male gender (P < .01), normal BMI (P < .01), and higher education (P < .01). When compared to individuals with low SRH, those with high SRH were 2 times as likely to meet recommended levels of RT (OR = 2.32; 95% CI = 1.96 to 2.76). The model modestly attenuated when fully adjusted for confounding variables, including other exercise (OR = 1.79; 95% CI = 1.49 to 2.15).

Conclusion:

This study identifies the specific positive relationship between RT and SRH, further supporting the health benefits of meeting the national recommendations for RT.

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Jesus Soares, Eduardo J. Simões, Luiz Roberto Ramos, Michael Pratt and Ross C. Brownson

Background:

We used data from a random telephone survey of 2045 adults in Recife, Brazil to investigate the associations of health-related quality of life (HRQoL) with selected factors.

Methods:

We generated odds ratios of 4 HRQoL measures (perception of overall health, mentally unhealthy days, physically unhealthy days, and physically and mentally unhealthy days impeding usual activities) by levels of environmental factors (number of destinations, neighborhood aesthetics, neighborhood crime safety, neighborhood traffic interference, and neighborhood walkability), physical activity behavior, and participation in the Academia da Cidade Program (ACP).

Results:

Perception of overall health was associated with age, gender, education, body mass index (BMI) level, chronic disease, and having heard or seen an ACP activity. Mentally unhealthy days were associated with age, sex, BMI level, neighborhood aesthetics, and neighborhood crime safety. Physically unhealthy days were associated with age, sex, chronic diseases, leisure time physical activity, and neighborhood crime safety, and neighborhood traffic interference. Physically and mentally unhealthy days impeding usual activities were associated with chronic disease neighborhood crime safety, and traffic interference.

Conclusions:

The associations of HRQoL with environmental factors and health promoting programs may have public health policy implications and highlight the need for additional research into HRQoL in Brazil.

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Andrew W. Tu, Allison W. Watts and Louise C. Masse

Background:

The purpose of this study was to examine the association between parent and adolescent levels of physical activity, sedentary behaviors, and sleep among a group of overweight and obese adolescents.

Methods:

Baseline data of parent–adolescent pairs who enrolled in a lifestyle modification intervention were analyzed for this study (n = 176). Participants completed questionnaires about their screen time (TV, video game, and computer time), wore an accelerometer for 8 days, and completed a sleep diary for 1 week. In total, 98 parent–adolescent dyads provided valid data for the analyses. Multivariable regression analyses were conducted to assess the relationship between parent and adolescent’s moderate-to-vigorous activity (MVPA), step counts, sedentary behaviors, and sleep duration. Analyses were split by weekday, weekday evening and weekend.

Results:

Parent–adolescent MVPA was significantly associated on weekdays (b = 0.18; SE = 0.08; β = 0.26), weekday evenings (b = 0.21; SE = 0.08; β = 0.28), and weekends (b = 0.29; SE = 0.12; β = 0.27). This study found associations between parent–child video game time on weekends (b = 1.10; SE = 0.49; β = 0.24) and computer time on weekdays (b = 0.42; SE = 0.19; β = 0.23). Adolescent sleep was associated with parental sleep on weekdays only (b = 0.38; SE = 0.09; β = 0.46).

Conclusions:

The findings warrant further investigation into the direction and mechanism of the relationship between parent and adolescent weight related behaviors.