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ISSN: 2165-7025

Journal of Novel Physiotherapies
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Research Article

Choosing Instruments for Research: an Evaluation of Two Activity Monitors in Healthy Women

Constance Visovsky*, Kevin E Kip, Janique Lashae Rice, Marian Hardwick and Patricia Hall
Department of Physical therapy, University of South Florida, USA
Corresponding Author : Constance Visovsky
Department of Physical therapy, University of South Florida
12901 Bruce B. Downs Blvd. MDC 22, Tampa, Florida 33612-4766, USA
Tel: 813-974-3831
Fax: 813-974-5418
E-mail: [email protected]
Received June 06, 2013; Accepted July 17, 2013; Published July 20, 2013
Citation: Visovsky C, Kip KE, Rice JL, Hardwick M, Hall P (2013) Choosing Instruments for Research: an Evaluation of Two Activity Monitors in Healthy Women. J Nov Physiother 3:171. doi:10.4172/2165-7025.1000171
Copyright: © 2013 Visovsky C, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Abstract

Introduction/purpose: Activity-based monitors offer researchers a feasible, quantitative means for the assessing physical activity and sleep quality on a consistent and uniform basis. The purpose of this comparative study was to evaluate the reliability and feasibility of the Fitbit 4.10 activity based monitoring system to the standard actigraph Gtx3+ in 42 data points in healthy women.

Methods: A head-to-head comparison of two activity monitoring systems was conducted using data generated from participants who each wore the two monitors simultaneously for 20-22 hours per day for 14 consecutive days. Outcome variables of interest included both physical activity and sleep quality measurements. Data analysis consisted of descriptive statistics for the sample demographics, one measure of association (Pearson r) and three measures of agreement (intraclass correlation, concordance correlation, and Bland Altman plots) to evaluate the reliability of the two activity monitors.

Results: Compared to the actigraph Gtx3+ as the standard, the Fitbit appears to be of limited value in terms of calorie quantification expended per day, times awake per night, and sleep efficiency percentage. While the Fitbit is of practical use and was considered to be more acceptable for use by the participants it has limited utility for reliably capturing research data on energy expenditure, the number of night time awakenings, and sleep efficiency percentage.

Conclusion: The Fit bit shows the potential for reliable use in research studies whose outcome is based on physical activity measurements such as number of steps walked. Studies with a primary outcome of sleep quality may find limitations in this device.

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