Purpose: Regular physical activity (PA) is associated with lower risk for several chronic diseases. It is important to validate PA measurement instruments in different populations. The objective was to validate the Minnesota leisure time PA questionnaire among Spanish women.
Methods: A cross-sectional study with quota sampling was designed. Two PA groups (active, expending less than 301 MET-min x d(-1) in PA, and very active, expending more than 300 MET-min x d(-1)) and two age groups (18-40 and 41-60 yr) were defined. The Minnesota questionnaire was administered to obtain total energy expenditure in leisure time PA (EEPAtotal) and classified according to the intensity of the different types of PA (EEPAheavy, EEPAmoderate, and EEPAlight). The 250 women recruited performed an exercise test to assess fitness.
Results: Spearman correlation coefficients among EEPAtotal, EEPAheavy, EEPAmoderate, EEPAlight, and fitness were 0.39, 0.51, 0.13, and 0.02, respectively. Multiple linear regression model adjusted by the different EEPAs and age accounted for 46% of fitness variability. Besides age, only EEPAmoderate and EEPAheavy were associated with fitness.
Conclusion: The Spanish version of the Minnesota questionnaire is a valid instrument for measuring leisure time PA performed in the last year in Spanish women aged 18-60 yr. Moderate and heavy physical activity are adequately assessed whereas light physical activity practice assessment may be questionable.