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Measures of Physical Activity in Parkinson’s Disease (MAPD)

Background: Previous research indicates that Physical Activity (PA) can help people with Parkinson’s (PwP) to manage their symptoms but that they are less active than people of the same age and in relation to PA guidelines. Common PA measures include questionnaires or accelerometers. Accelerometers are not routinely used in clinical services. Little research has been conducted on PwP perceived feasibility and utility of using body-worn accelerometers. Objective: This quantitative, observational study assessed the concurrent validity, feasibility and perceived utility of a questionnaire and body-worn accelerometer to capture PA in people with newly diagnosed Parkinson’s. Methods: Twenty-four participants were recruited from a service for newly diagnosed PwP at University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust, UK. The study was conducted remotely by postal, telephone and email correspondence. Participants used a wrist-worn accelerometer (GENEActiv™) for one week, completed the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ-S) about that week’s PA, and completed a Likert-style utility questionnaire on perceived feasibility and utility of using these PA measures. Energy expenditure (metabolic equivalents – METs) calculated from the PA measures were compared using Spearman’s correlation. Descriptive statistics summarised PA levels in relation to WHO guidelines and feasibility of measures based on responses to utility questionnaire. Results: The sample (n=24, 17 males, 7 females; mean age 72.4 years, SD ± 9.7; mean disease duration 1 years) showed a significant moderate correlation between total weekly energy expenditure calculated from the PA measures (rs = 0.55, n = 24, p =.003). Overall, the sample were above guidelines for moderate PA (IPAQ-S mean 453 mins per week, range 0 – 3010, SD ± 718); GENEActiv™ mean 265 mins per week, range 1 - 794, SD ± 217). Participants agreed ‘the PA questionnaire was easy to fill in’ (median response 2 = agree, IQR 2) but disagreed with the statement ‘I would rather fill in a PA questionnaire about the previous week than wear the sensor for a week’ (median response 4 = disagree, IQR 2). Conclusion: Findings suggest it is feasible to introduce a measure of PA to Parkinson’s patients remotely. There was wide variation between the measures when determining levels of moderate PA. Validation of the GENEActiv™ device against gold standard measures of PA intensity in PwP is needed to establish criterion validity. Impact: This work contributes to the understanding of patient experience and preferences in remote monitoring of PA and the use of these measures to plan service provision to support PA.

Parkinson’s, Physical Activity, Accelerometer, Physical Activity Questionnaire

APA Style

Jonathan Gilby, Camille Carroll, Jonathan Marsden. (2023). Measures of Physical Activity in Parkinson’s Disease (MAPD). International Journal of Neurologic Physical Therapy, 9(1), 1-9.

ACS Style

Jonathan Gilby; Camille Carroll; Jonathan Marsden. Measures of Physical Activity in Parkinson’s Disease (MAPD). Int. J. Neurol. Phys. Ther. 2023, 9(1), 1-9. doi: 10.11648/j.ijnpt.20230901.11

AMA Style

Jonathan Gilby, Camille Carroll, Jonathan Marsden. Measures of Physical Activity in Parkinson’s Disease (MAPD). Int J Neurol Phys Ther. 2023;9(1):1-9. doi: 10.11648/j.ijnpt.20230901.11

Copyright © 2023 Authors retain the copyright of this article.
This article is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License ( which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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