Academic journal article Canadian Journal of Public Health

Concurrent Validity of the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ) in an Iiyiyiu Aschii (Cree) Community

Academic journal article Canadian Journal of Public Health

Concurrent Validity of the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ) in an Iiyiyiu Aschii (Cree) Community

Article excerpt

ABSTRACT

Background: Culturally acceptable and validated instruments for assessing physical activity among Indigenous Peoples are lacking. Given the current trends in obesity, health behaviour surveillance tools are needed to evaluate trends and to determine the effectiveness of health promotion efforts aimed at curbing the obesity epidemic.

Objective: To evaluate whether the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ) scores correlate with anthropometric indices in an Iiyiyiu Aschii community (Cree Territory of northern Québec, Canada).

Methods: A cross-sectional study was carried out in a Cree community as part of a larger research effort entitled, "Nituuchischaayihitaau Aschii: A Multi-Community Environment-and-Health Longitudinal Study in Iiyiyiu Aschii". Randomly selected adult participants (n=161) underwent an anthropometric assessment and answered the IPAQ which was administered by bilingual research assistants. Concurrent validity of the IPAQ was evaluated by the extent to which the physical activity scores were related to anthropometric measures.

Results: Significant inverse correlations were observed between the IPAQ Total MET score and % body fat (r = -.19, p≤0.01) and the IPAQ Vigorous MET score and % body fat (r = -.26, p≤0.001), but not for waist circumference or BMI. Walkers (6-7 days/wk for .60 minutes/day), however, had a waist circumference that was, on average, 5 cm smaller than non-walkers in age- and sex-adjusted linear regression analyses (β=-4.97; SE=2.5; p≤0.05).

Discussion: The results indicate that the IPAQ holds promise as a culturally adaptable questionnaire for the Iiyiyiuch. However, modifications will help improve its acceptability for community members.

Key words: Anthropometry; indigenous populations; motor activity; validity

Physical activity is a protective factor against overweight and obesity,1,2 and physical inactivity is associated with increased risk of chronic diseases.3 Culturally validated instruments for assessing physical activity among Indigenous Peoples are needed for health behaviour surveillance and for evaluation of the effectiveness of health promotion efforts. Also, in epidemiologic studies, a valid physical activity instrument can facilitate multidisciplinary research regarding the determinants of health. Because of the lack of internationally comparable physical activity measures that are culturally adaptable, the International Consensus Group developed the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ) in 1996.4

The primary objective of the current paper was to evaluate the concurrent validity of the IPAQ through evaluating its correlation with anthropometric indices in a Cree population.

METHODS

Study population

A cross-sectional study was conducted in the community of Mistissini, Québec in the summer of 2005 and was coordinated by the Cree Board of Health in collaboration with McMaster, Laval, and McGill universities. A research agreement was developed with the Cree Board of Health and project development and refinements took place in the community. Ethics approval was obtained from participating institutions. Radio announcements and meetings built awareness of the project. Bilingual Iiyiyiuch interviewers conducted recruitment and interviewing. Pregnant women were not eligible to participate. A stratified random sampling design consisting of 4 age strata was used to recruit participants from municipal lists. While the pilot study included children, the current analyses were restricted to adults. A total of 359 adults were randomly selected, of whom 79 were out of town or not able to be reached. Of the resulting 280 potential participants, 62% participated in the study (n=172). Anthropometry and physical activity assessments were available on 161 adults.

IPAQ

There are two versions of the IPAQ: a short and a long version.4 The short version of the IPAQ was designed to be used in surveillance studies, whereas the long version was designed for research. …

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