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Objectively Measured Patterns of Activities of Different Intensity Categories and Steps Taken Among Working Adults in a Multi-ethnic Asian Population

Müller-Riemenschneider, Falk MBBS, MSc, MD; Ng, Sheryl Hui Xian BSc; Koh, David MBBS, MSc, PhD; Chu, Anne Hin Yee MMedSci

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: June 2016 - Volume 58 - Issue 6 - p e206–e211
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0000000000000745
Original Articles

Objective: To objectively assess sedentary behavior (SB), light- and moderate-to-vigorous intensity physical activity (MVPA), and steps among Singaporean office-based workers across days of the week.

Methods: A convenience sample of office-based employees of a public University was recruited. Time spent for SB, light-, and MVPA using different validated accelerometry counts per minute (CPM), and step count were determined.

Results: Depending on applied CPM for SB (less than 100, less than 150 and less than 200 CPM), 107 working adults spent between 69.2% and 76.4% of their daily wakeful time in SB. Time spent in SB and MVPA were higher on weekdays than weekends. The hourly analysis highlights patterns of greater SB during usual working hours on weekdays but not on weekends.

Conclusions: SB at work contributes greatly toward total daily sitting time. Low PA levels and high SB levels were found on weekends.

Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health (Dr Müller-Riemenschneider, Ms Ng, Prof Koh, and Ms Chu), National University of Singapore; Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine (Dr Müller-Riemenschneider), National University Health System, Singapore; Institute for Social Medicine, Epidemiology and Health Economics (Dr Müller-Riemenschneider), Charite University Medical Centre, Berlin, Germany; PAPRSB Institute of Health Sciences (Prof Koh), Gadong, Brunei Darussalam.

Address correspondence to: Anne Hin Yee Chu, MMedSci, Block MD1, 12 Science Drive 2, #09–01, Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health, National University of Singapore, 117549, Singapore (;

This study was supported by grants from the National University of Singapore (WBS: R608–000–071–112 and WBS: R-608–000–063–133) from the National University of Singapore.

The authors report no conflicts of interest.

Copyright © 2016 by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine