Skip to Content

Arnold School of Public Health

Amherst Youth Physical Activity Study


There we two phases to the Amherst study. In the first phase children were consented into an ActiGraph calibration study. Children 6- to 18-years completed two treadmill walking speeds and one running speed. Respiratory gas exchange was measured using indirect calorimetry and the ActiGraph was worn on the hip and programmed to collect minute-by-minute counts. ( Freedson et al., 2005);

In the second phase of the study children 6- to 18- wore accelerometers and parents of all children completed questionnaires. Children in grades 7-12 also completed questionnaires. Questionnaire data included physical activity and determinants of physical activity. Main study data was collected in Amherst, Mass. under the direction of Patty Freedson. Analyses were performed at the University of South Carolina under the direction of Russell Pate. Reliability data were collected in Texas under the direction of Wendel l Taylor.

Project Details

Timeline: 1996 - 2000
Funding Source: Cowles Foundation
Principal Investigator: Russell R. Pate
Co-Investigator(s): Patty Freedson, James Sallis, Wendell Taylor


Dowda M, Pate RR, Sallis JF, Freedson PS, Taylor WC, Sirard JR, Trost SG. Agreement between student-reported and proxy-reported physical activity questionnaires. Pediatr Exerc Sci. Aug 2007;19(3):310-318.[pdf]

Trost SG, Sallis JF, Pate RR, Freedson PS, Taylor WC, Dowda M. Evaluating a model of parental influence on youth physical activity. Am J Prev Med. 2003;25(4):277-282.[pdf]

Trost SG, Pate RR, Sallis JF, Freedson PS, Taylor WC, Dowda M, Sirard J. Age and gender differences in objectively measured physical activity in youth. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise. 2002;34(2):350-355.[pdf]

Sallis JF, Taylor WC, Dowda M, Freedson PS, Pate RR. Correlates of vigorous physical activity for children in grades 1 through 12: Comparing parent-reported and objectively measured physical activity. Pediatric Exercise Science. 2002;14(1):30-44.[pdf]

Pate RR, Freedson PS, Sallis JF, Taylor WC, Sirard J, Trost SG, Dowda M. Compliance with Physical Activity Guidelines: Prevalence in a Population of Children and Youth. Annals of Epidemiology. 2002;12(5):303-308.[pdf]

Taylor WC, Sallis JF, Dowda M, Freedson PS, Eason K, Pate RR. Activity Patterns and Correlates Among Youth: Differences By Weight Status. Pediatric Exercise Science. 2002; 14:418-431.[pdf]

Trost SG, Pate RR, Freedson PS, Sallis JF, Taylor WC. Using objective physical activity measures with youth: how many days of monitoring are needed? Med Sci Sports Exerc 2000 Feb;32(2):426-431.[pdf]

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.