Reproducibility of the past year and historical self-administered total physical activity questionnaire among older women

Eur J Epidemiol. 2007;22(6):363-8. doi: 10.1007/s10654-006-9102-1. Epub 2007 Feb 28.


Few studies have evaluated the reliability of a self-administered current and historical physical activity questionnaire (PAQ) among middle-aged and elderly women. We evaluated the reliability of a self-administered PAQ designed to assess total (24 h) current and historical physical activity at age 15, 30, and 50 years, which was completed by a subgroup of 303 women aged 56-75 years from the Swedish Mammography Cohort (SMC). Total physical activity covered occupational and household activity as well as walking/bicycling, exercise, and inactivity (sitting watching TV/reading). Reliabilities (1-year test-retest) of continuous activity measures in metabolic equivalents were evaluated using an intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC); classification consistency was evaluated using sensitivity and specificity statistics. The ICC for total current physical activity was 0.69; for specific types of activities the ICC ranged from 0.49 to 0.59; for historical physical activity, the reliabilities for total activity ranged from 0.75 for age 50 to 0.81 for age 30 years, being substantial for occupational activities (ICC = 0.73-0.75), and fair to moderate for inactivity (ICC = 0.31-0.60). These data indicate that the PAQ used in the SMC is a satisfactory and reproducible measure of current and historical physical activity, for total as well as for different types of activities.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Exercise*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Life Style
  • Middle Aged
  • Occupations
  • Physical Fitness*
  • Recreation / physiology
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*
  • Time Factors