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Comparison of Accelerometer Cut Points to Estimate Physical Activity in U.S. Adults
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  • Alternative Title:
    J Sports Sci
  • Description:
    The purpose of this study was (1) to describe physical activity prevalence, categorised according to the 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans (2008 Guidelines), using different accelerometer cut points and (2) to examine physical activity prevalence patterns by reported cut points across selected characteristics. Cut points from 9 studies were used to estimate physical activity prevalence in a national adult sample (n = 6547). Estimates were stratified by validation study activity protocols used to derive cut points--ambulatory (walking/running) and lifestyle activities (e.g. gardening, housework, walking). Results showed that the prevalence of meeting the 2008 Guidelines ranged from 6.3% to 98.3% overall and was lower for cut points derived from ambulatory (median = 11.5%, range = 6.3-27.4%) compared to lifestyle (median = 77.2%, range = 60.6-98.3%) protocols. Prevalence patterns across protocols differed for age, but were similar for other characteristics. In conclusion, prevalence of meeting the 2008 Guidelines varied widely, indicating that choice of cut point had an impact on prevalence. To generate future accelerometer cut points one may consider developing cut points for demographic subgroups using a variety of lifestyle physical activities.

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