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ORIGINAL ARTICLES  EPIDEMIOLOGY AND CLINICAL MEDICINE 

The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2013 October;53(5):502-8

Copyright © 2013 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Criterion validity of the Physical Activity Questionnaire for Schoolchildren (PAQ-S) in assessing physical activity levels: the Healthy Growth Study

Manios Y., Androutsos O., Moschonis G., Birbilis M., Maragkopoulou K., Giannopoulou A., Argyri E., Kourlaba G.

Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Harokopio University of Athens, Athens, Greece


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Aim: The aim of this paper was to evaluate the criterion validity of the Physical Activity Questionnaire for Schoolchildren (PAQ-S).
Methods: The current study is a subcohort of the Healthy Growth Study, a large-scale cross-sectional study. 202 schoolchildren aged 9-13 years from Greece completed the PAQ-S and wore an accelerometer for 4 consecutive days. Time spent moderate (MPA), moderate to vigorous (MVPA) and vigorous (VPA) physical activity was calculated based on PAQ-S and accelerometer data.
Results: The average time spent on MPA and MVPA as derived from PAQ-S and from accelerometers were significantly moderately correlated (r=0.462, P<0.001 and r=0.483, P<0.001, respectively). No significant correlation was detected between PAQ-S and accelerometer-measured time spent performing VPA (rho=0.150, P=0.057). Intraclass Correlation Coefficient (ICC) indicated a moderate agreement between PAQ-S and accelerometer in estimating MPA (ICC=0.592, P<0.001) and MVPA (ICC=0.581, P<0.001). Bland-Altman analysis revealed a small mean difference (the “bias”), between the two methods, in estimating MPA, although this difference was found to be significantly higher than zero (“bias”=27.4% of the accelerometer-measured mean score, P=0.006). On the other hand, Bland-Altman analysis revealed a large mean difference in estimating MVPA and VPA (“bias”=84.2% and 357% of the accelerometer-measured mean score for MVPA and VPA, respectively and P<0.001). The high correlation coefficient between the average and difference values between all physical activity scores derived from accelerometers and PAQ-S, indicate a systematic overestimation of physical activity time with increasing physical activity for PAQ-S.
Conclusion: The validity of PAQ-S for the estimation of MPA and MVPA was found to be slightly similar self-reported measures for schoolchildren. Therefore, this questionnaire could be used as a tool for physical activity assessment in large population studies.

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