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Differences by age and sex in the sedentary time of adults in Scotland

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    Rights statement: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Journal of Sports Sciences, on 16 June 2017, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/02640414.2017.1339904

    Accepted author manuscript, 380 KB, PDF document

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Sports Sciences
Issue number7
Early online date16 Jun 2017
Publication statusPublished - 2018


Previous nationally-representative research in Scotland found a j-shaped relationship between age and leisure sedentary time (ST): a decrease from young to middle-age, before rising steeply in older-age. This study investigated the effects of age and sex on weekday (including work) ST for all adults and stratified by work-status, and on weekend day ST. Differences in the relative contributions of component behaviours were also investigated. Responses from 14,367 adult (≥16 years) 2012-14 Scottish Health Survey participants were analysed using linear regressions. We found no j-shaped relationship between age and weekday ST. Instead, only 16-24 year olds reported lower levels than those over 75 years (6.6 (95% CI: 6.3-6.9) compared to 7.4 (95% CI: 7.2-7.6) hours/day; p<0001). The j-shape was only evident in the stratified analysis amongst women not in work, and for weekend day ST for all groups. For those in work, work ST accounted for 45% of weekday ST. Television/screen ST made up over half of leisure ST on weekdays and weekend days, regardless of sex, age, or work-status. These results challenge our understanding of how ST varies by age. Interventions to reduce ST should consider differences in the relative contributions of ST behaviours by age and work-status.

    Research areas

  • sedentary, survey, sex , adults, age

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