Translating Physical Activity Recommendations into a Pedometer-Based Step Goal. 3000 Steps in 30 Minutes

Simon J. Marshall, Susan S. Levy, Catrine E. Tudor-Locke, Fred W. Kolkhorst, Karen M. Wooten, Ming Ji, Caroline A. Macera, Barbara Ainsworth

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Abstract

Background: It is a public health recommendation to accumulate at least 150 minutes per week of moderate intensity physical activity. Although pedometers are widely used as a physical activity-monitoring tool, they are unable to measure activity intensity. Translating current physical activity recommendations into a pedometer-based guideline could increase the public health impact of physical activity interventions. Methods: A community sample of 97 adults (60% women, with a mean age of 32.1 [±10.6] years and a mean BMI of 28.8 [±5.5]) completed four 6-minute incremental walking bouts on a level treadmill at 65, 80, 95, and 110 m·min-1. A calibrated metabolic cart was used to measure energy expenditure at each speed. Steps were measured using a Yamax SW-200 pedometer. Step-rate cut points associated with minimally moderate-intensity activity (defined as 3 METs) were determined using multiple regression, mixed modeling, and receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves. All data were collected and analyzed in 2006. Results: For men, step counts per minute associated with walking at 3 METs were 92 step·min-1 (multiple regression); 101 step·min-1 (mixed modeling); and 102 step·min-1 (ROC curve). For women, step counts per minute associated with walking at 3 METs were 91 step·min-1 (multiple regression); 111 step·min-1 (mixed modeling); and 115 step·min-1 (ROC curve). However, for each analysis there was substantial error in model fit. Conclusions: Moderate-intensity walking appears approximately equal to at least 100 step·min-1. However, step counts per minute is a poor proxy for METs, and so 100 step·min-1 should be used only as a general physical activity promotion heuristic. To meet current guidelines, individuals are encouraged to walk a minimum of 3000 steps in 30 minutes on 5 days each week. Three bouts of 1000 steps in 10 minutes each day can also be used to meet the recommended goal.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)410-415
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Preventive Medicine
Volume36
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2009

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Walking
Exercise
ROC Curve
Public Health
Guidelines
Proxy
Energy Metabolism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Epidemiology

Cite this

Marshall, S. J., Levy, S. S., Tudor-Locke, C. E., Kolkhorst, F. W., Wooten, K. M., Ji, M., ... Ainsworth, B. (2009). Translating Physical Activity Recommendations into a Pedometer-Based Step Goal. 3000 Steps in 30 Minutes. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 36(5), 410-415. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.amepre.2009.01.021

Translating Physical Activity Recommendations into a Pedometer-Based Step Goal. 3000 Steps in 30 Minutes. / Marshall, Simon J.; Levy, Susan S.; Tudor-Locke, Catrine E.; Kolkhorst, Fred W.; Wooten, Karen M.; Ji, Ming; Macera, Caroline A.; Ainsworth, Barbara.

In: American Journal of Preventive Medicine, Vol. 36, No. 5, 05.2009, p. 410-415.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Marshall, SJ, Levy, SS, Tudor-Locke, CE, Kolkhorst, FW, Wooten, KM, Ji, M, Macera, CA & Ainsworth, B 2009, 'Translating Physical Activity Recommendations into a Pedometer-Based Step Goal. 3000 Steps in 30 Minutes', American Journal of Preventive Medicine, vol. 36, no. 5, pp. 410-415. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.amepre.2009.01.021
Marshall, Simon J. ; Levy, Susan S. ; Tudor-Locke, Catrine E. ; Kolkhorst, Fred W. ; Wooten, Karen M. ; Ji, Ming ; Macera, Caroline A. ; Ainsworth, Barbara. / Translating Physical Activity Recommendations into a Pedometer-Based Step Goal. 3000 Steps in 30 Minutes. In: American Journal of Preventive Medicine. 2009 ; Vol. 36, No. 5. pp. 410-415.
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