Ability of RT3 accelerometer cut points to detect physical activity intensity in ambulatory children with cerebral palsy

Adapt Phys Activ Q. 2014 Oct;31(4):310-24. doi: 10.1123/apaq.2013-0088.


This study investigated the ability of published cut points for the RT3 accelerometer to differentiate between levels of physical activity intensity in children with cerebral palsy (CP). Oxygen consumption (metabolic equivalents; METs) and RT3 data (counts/min) were measured during rest and 5 walking trials. METs and corresponding counts/min were classified as sedentary, light physical activity (LPA), and moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) according to MET thresholds. Counts were also classified according to published cut points. A published cut point exhibited an excellent ability to classify sedentary activity (sensitivity=89.5%, specificity=100.0%). Classification accuracy decreased when published cut points were used to classify LPA (sensitivity=88.9%, specificity=79.6%) and MVPA (sensitivity=70%, specificity=95-97%). Derivation of a new cut point improved classification of both LPA and MVPA. Applying published cut points to RT3 accelerometer data collected in children with CP may result in misclassification of LPA and MVPA.

MeSH terms

  • Accelerometry / instrumentation*
  • Adolescent
  • Cerebral Palsy / physiopathology*
  • Child
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Monitoring, Ambulatory / instrumentation*
  • Motor Activity / physiology*
  • Oxygen Consumption / physiology
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Walking / physiology