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Indoor and outdoor context-specific contributions to early adolescent MVPA as measured by combined diary, accelerometer and GPS

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    Rights statement: This is a version of the article 'Indoor and Outdoor Context-Specific Contributions to Early Adolescent MVPA as Measured by Combined Diary, Accelerometer and GPS' as accepted for publication in the Journal of Physical Activity & Health.

    Accepted author manuscript, 452 KB, PDF document

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)40-45
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Physical Activity and Health
Issue number1
Early online date31 Jan 2018
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 31 Jan 2018


The distribution of adolescent MVPA across multiple contexts is unclear. This study examined indoor and outdoor leisure-time in terms of being structured or unstructured, and explored relationships with total daily MVPA.

Between September 2012 and January 2014, seventy 11-13 year olds from 4 schools in Edinburgh wore an accelerometer and GPS receiver over 7 days, also reporting structured physical activity using a diary. Time spent and MVPA were summarised according to indoor/outdoor location and whether activity was structured/unstructured. Independent associations between context-specific time spent and total daily MVPA were examined using multivariate linear regression.

Very little time or MVPA was recorded in structured contexts. Unstructured outdoor leisure-time was associated with an increase in total daily MVPA almost twice that of unstructured indoor leisure-time (b-value [95% CI]: 8.45 [1.71, 14.48] vs. 4.38 [0.20, 8.22] minute increase per hour spent). The association was stronger for time spent in structured outdoor leisure-time (35.81 [20.60, 52.27]).

Research and interventions should focus on strategies to facilitate time outdoors during unstructured leisure-time and maximise MVPA once youth are outdoors. Increasing the proportion of youth engaging in structured activity may be beneficial as although time spent was limited, association with MVPA was strongest.

    Research areas

  • play, objective, youth, environment

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