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Res Q Exerc Sport. 2009 Sep;80(3):403-11.

Pre- and postnatal women's leisure time physical activity patterns: a multilevel longitudinal analysis.

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  • 1Department of Kinesiology, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.


The purpose of this study was to examine women's leisure time physical activity (LTPA) before pregnancy, during pregnancy, and through the first 7 months postnatal. Pre- and postnatal women (n = 309) completed the 12-month Modifiable Activity Questionnaire and demographic information. Multilevel modeling was used to estimate a growth curve representing the average change in LTPA over time and intraindividual variations in the average growth curve over time. Growth curve estimates for the linear quadratic, and cubic trends were significant (p < .05), indicating that LTPA declined during pregnancy but then increased following birth. The results also demonstrated that the individual trajectories of LTPA varied substantially from the average growth curve. One demographic predictor variable (having other children at home) was significant (p < .05).

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