Validation of the BodyMedia SenseWear Pro Armband to Estimate Energy Expenditure in Severely Overweight Children During Various Modes of Activity

by Mealey, Alyssa D

Abstract (Summary)
Developing valid and reliable portable devices to assess energy expenditure (EE) has been and still remains a challenge to researchers. The SenseWear Pro ArmbandĀ„ (SWA) is a device that utilizes a combination of measurement techniques in an attempt to increase the accuracy of predicting EE. Current research has produced conflicting results when validating this device in children and no research has focused on the validity of this device in severely overweight children. PURPOSE: The primary aim of this investigation was to examine the validity of the SWA to assess EE during various modes of activity in severely overweight children. METHODS: Twenty severely overweight children (10 boys, 10 girls) between 9-12 years of age participated in validation trials for three modes of exercise that included treadmill walking, a walk video, and Dance, Dance Revolution (DDR). During each exercise protocol, EE was measured simultaneously by indirect calorimetry (IC) and the SWA. RESULTS: There were significant differences between IC (70.84+29.65) and the armband (96.18+36.33) for assessing EE for the walk video (p=0.002). There were trends towards significance between EE from IC (78.26+29.65) and the SWA (88.99+31.18) for treadmill walking (p=0.097) and between IC (62.30+15.53) and the armband (75.60+31.67) for DDR (p=0.054). For all exercise modes, EE estimated from the armband was greater than EE measured by IC. There was a significant correlation between these two devices when assessing EE during treadmill walking (r=0.591, p=0.006), the walk video (r=0.849, p<0.001), and DDR (r=0.654, p=0.008). Results also demonstrated that there was no significant effect of gender on the validity of the armband to estimate EE compared to IC. CONCLUSION: The SWA overestimated EE for all modes of activity. The accuracy of the armband does not appear to vary by gender for these activities in severely overweight children. These findings demonstrate the need to increase the accuracy of this device in estimating EE in severely overweight children during these modes of activity. Future studies should be conducted to confirm the findings of this investigation and to expand on the research related to refinement of the SWA technology and algorithms to estimate EE in severely overweight children.
Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:Marsha Marcus; Jere Gallagher; John Jakicic; Amy Otto

School:University of Pittsburgh

School Location:USA - Pennsylvania

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:health physical and recreation education


Date of Publication:09/29/2008

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