The validity of a commercially-available, low-cost, wrist-mounted accelerometer during treadmill exercise and free-living physical activity

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Journal of Sports Sciences


Low-cost physical activity monitors may provide a more accurate measure of physical activity than subjective methods (e.g., self-report) while being less costly than research-grade accelerometers. The present study assessed the validity of a low-cost monitor (Movband 2) to estimate physical activity behavior/intensity. Participants (N = 23, n = 16 female, BMI = 22.9 ± 4.0 kg/m2, age = 21.9 ± 1.6 years) completed four, five-minute treadmill stages (2.0, 3.0, 4.0, 5.0 MPH) while wearing both the Movband and the previously-validated Actigraph monitor. Oxygen consumption (VO2) was recorded during each stage (Laboratory assessment). A subset (n = 15, n = 10 female, BMI = 22.2 ± 3.2 kg/m2, age = 21.5 ± 0.8 years) of these participants then wore the two accelerometers for three days (Free-living assessment). During the Laboratory assessment there were strong, significant (r = 0.94, p ≤ 0.001) relationships between Movband and Actigraph counts and VO2. During Free-living assessment there was also a strong, significant (r = 0.97, p < 0.001) correlation between Movband and Actigraph counts. The low-cost, Movband accelerometer appears to provide a valid assessment of physical activity behavior/intensity.