Associations between socio-economic position and sedentary behaviour in a large population sample of Australian middle and older-aged adults: The Social, Economic, and Environmental Factor (SEEF) Study

Prev Med. 2014 Jun:63:72-80. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2014.03.009. Epub 2014 Mar 18.


Objective: Socioeconomic position (SEP) is associated with health-related behaviours but little is known about the socioeconomic gradient of sedentary behaviour. This study aims to assess the associations between SEP and multiple indicators of sedentary behaviour among Australian mid-to-older age adults.

Method: Multivariate analysis of 60,404 (>47years, 26,366 in paid employment) participants in the Social, Economic, and Environmental Factor Study, examining the associations between SEP (educational attainment, household income, and an area-level index of socioeconomic advantage) and self-reported daily time for total sitting, TV viewing, computer use, and car driving. Data was collected in 2010 in New South Wales, Australia.

Results: For participants in paid employment, we found positive associations with all SEP indicators for total sitting and computer use time, and inverse associations for TV viewing. Driving time was inversely associated with education level only. We observed similar but less pronounced patterns of associations among participants not in paid employment.

Conclusion: Higher SEP is linked to higher total sitting and computer time, particularly among those in paid employment, and lower TV viewing time.

Keywords: Behaviour; Health; Sedentary; Sitting; Socioeconomic; TV.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Educational Status
  • Employment
  • Female
  • Health Behavior
  • Humans
  • Leisure Activities*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • New South Wales
  • Sedentary Behavior*
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Television / statistics & numerical data