Physical activity measurements: Lessons learned from the pathways study

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


High obesity rates in American Indian children led to Pathways, a randomized school-and community-based childhood prevention study. Seven tribes, 5 universities, the National Institutes of Health/National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, and 4 elementary schools partnered in the study. Increasing physical activity (PA) was an important intervention target. The PA assessment was based on study objectives, feasibility, and tribal acceptance. A time-segmented analysis was also desired. Two methods, a new PA questionnaire and accelerometry, were developed during pilot testing. Together, the methods provided qualitative and quantitative information and showed that 3 of 4 sites were able to increase average daily PA, although overall the control versus intervention difference was not significant. The main limitation was inability to distinguish PA among individuals. Accelerometer size and some community concerns led to a protocol based on a single day of wearing time. Newer model triaxial accelerometers that are much smaller and allow sampling of multiple days of activity are recommended for future studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)420-425
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Public Health Management and Practice
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2010


  • Accelerometry
  • American Indian children
  • Pathways
  • Physical activity
  • Questionnaire

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


Dive into the research topics of 'Physical activity measurements: Lessons learned from the pathways study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this