Development and evaluation of an activity measure for people with spinal cord injury

Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2005 Jul;37(7):1099-111. doi: 10.1249/01.mss.0000170127.54394.eb.


Purpose: To develop and conduct a preliminary assessment of the content validity, test-retest reliability, and convergent validity of the Physical Activity Recall Assessment for People with Spinal Cord Injury (PARA-SCI), a new physical activity measure for people with SCI.

Methods: The scale format, interview guidelines, and activity intensity classification system were developed and content validated using qualitative and quantitative methodologies in multiple samples of people with SCI and their caregivers. Test-retest reliability (1-wk interval) was examined by administering the PARA-SCI via telephone to 102 men and women with SCI. Convergent validity was examined by assessing relationships between PARA-SCI scores and activity levels as determined by indirect calorimetry (N = 14).

Results: In the reliability study, intraclass correlations ranged from 0.45 to 0.91 for the various PARA-SCI activity categories and intensities. In the validity study, correlations between PARA-SCI scores and indirect calorimetry estimates of activity ranged from 0.27 to 0.88.

Conclusions: The PARA-SCI shows promise as a measure of physical activity for people with SCI. Further validation research is encouraged using broader samples and alternative validation techniques.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Canada
  • Caregivers
  • Exercise*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Recall
  • Middle Aged
  • Pilot Projects
  • Spinal Cord Injuries / classification
  • Spinal Cord Injuries / physiopathology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*