Physical activity for health Measurement

New technology provides opportunities to accurately measure physical activity and sedentary behaviour. Improved measurement is needed to:

  • assess the scale of the problem of low physical activity
  • understand the health effects of physical activity
  • evaluate the effect of interventions to more physical activity and less sedentary behaviour

Dr Dave Rowe’s research is particularly focused on this area. In addition to being a reader in exercise science at Strathclyde, Dr David Rowe is also an adjunct Professor of Measurement in the department of Kinesiology at East Carolina University, Greenville, USA. He also has past and current invited representation on several measurement groups including:

  • Chair of the Editorial Board and Section Editor, Measurement in Physical Education and Exercise Science
  • Scientific Committee, 12th Measurement and Evaluation Symposium (Theme: Youth Fitness Testing), Boston, MA, 2012 (sponsored by the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance)
  • British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences Expert Statement Panel on Objective Measurements of Physical Activity

Recent research papers

  • E Craig, J Ndirangu, RM Bland, JJ Reilly. Use of mid-upper arm circumference for determining overweight and overfatness in South African children and adolescents. Arch Dis Child 2014; 99: 763-766.
  • McMinn, D., Acharya, R., Rowe, DA., Gray, SR. & Allan, JL. (2013). 'Measuring Activity Energy Expenditure: Accuracy of the GT3X+ and Actiheart Monitors'. International Journal of Exercise Science, vol 6, no. 3, 5, pp. 217-229.
  • Tudor-Locke, C., & Rowe, D., (2012). Using cadence to study free-living ambulatory behaviour. Sports Medicine 42:381-398.
  • McMinn, D., Rowe, DA. & Cuk, I. (2012). 'Evaluation of the Trackstick™ Super GPS Tracker for use in Walking Research'. Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, vol 83, no. 1, pp. 108-113.
  • Rowe, D. (2011). Back to the Future? Algorithms and equipment vs. simplicity and common sense in physical activity measurement. International Journal of Human Movement Science, 25(2), 25-45.
  • Tudor-Locke, C., Craig, C., Beets, M., Belton, S., Cardon, G., Duncan, S., Hatano, Y., Lubans, D., Olds, T., Raustorp, A., Rowe, D., Spence, J., Tanaka, S., & Blair, S. (2011). How many steps/day are enough? For children and adolescents. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 8, 78.

Research grants

  • Validity of activity monitors for measuring physical activity, sedentary behaviour, and energy expenditure in children: a whole body calorimeter study. Heart Foundation of Australia (2012-2014; $130,000; £71,600) Reilly (co applicant)
  • Reliability, validity and feasibility of the IceTag accelerometer to monitor different modes and intensities of physical activity. Sports Technology Award for Research (STAR). (2012-2013, £5000) Hughes (co-applicant)
  • Validation of the Actiband accelerometer during ambulatory physical activity in children. Cambridge Neurotechnologies equipment grant. (2007-2009, £7,500) Rowe (PI)
  • Validation of FITNESSGRAM® aerobic fitness and body composition components and ACTIVITYGRAM® in 10- to 11-year-old children. Cooper Institute for Aerobics Research grant program. (2006-2008, $6,500) Rowe (co-applicant)
  • Measuring moderate intensity ambulatory activity using pedometers: The Healthy Steps Study. Accusplit equipment grant (2006-2007, $6,000) Rowe (co-applicant)