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Am J Public Health. 2010 Apr 1;100 Suppl 1:S263-8. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2009.180075. Epub 2010 Feb 10.

Disparities in data on Healthy People 2010 physical activity objectives collected by accelerometry and self-report.

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  • 1Divinity School, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA.



We compared findings on physical activity from national accelerometry data and Healthy People 2010 self-report data to identify differences in disparities by sociodemographic characteristics, gender, age, race/ethnicity, education level, and disability status.


Data were from the 2003 to 2004 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey's accelerometry and the Healthy People 2010 Midcourse Review. We computed prevalence of inactivity and regular moderate- and vigorous-intensity movement according to Healthy People 2010 operational definitions.


Mexican American adults were more active than non-Hispanic Blacks and Whites, and groups defined by race/ethnicity and educational attainment were more similar in physical activity in accelerometer than in self-report data. Disparities by gender and disability status were consistent with Healthy People 2010.


Disparities in physical activity differ from previous findings. Increased understanding of these disparities should be used to design better and more cost-effective physical activity interventions. Physical activity surveillance methods should be revised to make use of data collection methods that are more valid than self-report.

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