Max Rady College of Medicine
Concept: Physical Activity During Leisure Time - Measuring Prevalence
Last Updated: 2015-05-29
This concept provides information on developing a prevalence measure of "physical activity during leisure time" that can be derived from survey data. Information for this concept is from
The Cost of Smoking: A Manitoba Study
Martens et al. (2015).
The concept identifies the data sources for this information, describes how the measure is developed from this data, and provides links to MCHP research that uses this measure.
Data that can be used to calculate a measure of physical activity during leisure time is available from three different sources:
Developing A Measure of Physical Activity During Leisure Time
Questions about physical activity during leisure time were asked in all the survey waves except for the CCHS - Healthy Aging Survey. In our definition, leisure time does not include physical activity performed during work as part of an occupation, or during school, or for travel. Different methods were used, depending on the survey, to arrive at common categories for measuring physical activity using all the available survey data. These methods are described below.
"active" - includes daily, 5–6 times per week, 3–4 times per week,
"moderate" - 1–2 times per week, and
- "inactive" - less than once per week and never. Those who answered "no" to the previous question were assigned to the "inactive" category.
"active" - three or more METs
"moderate" - 1.5 to less than three METs, or
- "inactive" - zero to less than 1.5 METs.
Using the MHHS
In the MHHS respondents were asked, "Do you regularly engage in physical exercise during your leisure time? By regularly we mean at least once a week during the past two months." Those who did not answer "no" were then asked, "How many times per week do you exercise at least 15 minutes?"
Responses were grouped as:
Using the CCHS and NPHS
In the CCHS and NPHS, the leisure time physical activity index is a derived variable for survey respondents based on their average daily energy expenditure values (kcal/kg/day), calculated from a series of questions on physical activity. It includes physical activity for a variety of activities such as walking, running, gardening, soccer, etc., by the participant in the past three months. Respondents were asked questions such as, "In the past 3 months, how many times did you walk for exercise? About how much time did you spend on each occasion?"
Based on their answers, respondents' intensity of physical activity and total time spent active was converted into their average daily energy expenditure - a term called metabolic equivalent values or METs. Respondents were then grouped into three categories based on this value:
Calculating the Prevalence of Physical Activity During Leisure Time
The weighted crude prevalence rates of the three levels of physical activity during leisure time were then calculated for survey respondents aged 12 and older. Respondents who answered "don't know" and those with missing or invalid data were excluded from the prevalence calculation.
MCHP Research Into Physical Activity - Leisure
The Cost of Smoking: A Manitoba Study
Martens et al. (2015)
they calculated prevalence rates for the three different levels of physical activity during leisure time for survey respondents aged 12 and older. The prevalence rates found in this research are available in the following tables:
- Manitoba Heart Health Survey (MHHS) Data
- National Population Health Survey (NPHS)
- Participation in Leisure Physical Activity - (CCHS Survey Data)
- Physical Activity
- Physical Activity - Leisure and Travel - (CCHS Survey Data)
- Physical Activity Index
- Total Physical Activity Levels - (CCHS Survey Data)
- Martens P, Nickel N, Forget E, Lix L, Turner D, Prior H, Walld R, Soodeen RA, Rajotte L, Ekuma O. The Cost of Smoking: A Manitoba Study. Winnipeg, MB: Manitoba Centre for Health Policy, 2015. [Report] [Summary] [Updates and Errata] [Additional Materials] (View)
Manitoba Centre for Health Policy
Community Health Sciences, Max Rady College of Medicine,
Rady Faculty of Health Sciences,
Room 408-727 McDermot Ave.
University of Manitoba
Winnipeg, MB R3E 3P5 Canada