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Statistical Considerations in the Analysis of Accelerometry-Based Activity Monitor Data


Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: January 2012 - Volume 44 - Issue 1S - p S61–S67
doi: 10.1249/MSS.0b013e3182399e0f
Original Articles

ABSTRACT We review and discuss three statistical aspects of accelerometer-based estimates of physical activity energy expenditure (PAEE):

1) the nature of the relationship between accelerometer output and PAEE;

2) statistical aspects of calibration studies; and

3) two specialized statistical methods that are applicable to the problem of measurement error modeling and missing data methods.

We call for a continuing development of statistical methods that use more characteristics of the accelerometer signal to estimate PAEE, advocate the use of bias and SE statistics and inclusion of cross-validation in accelerometer research designs, and encourage more efforts to understand systematic and random errors in accelerometer-based estimates of PAEE.

1Department of Mathematics and Statistics, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA; 2Department of Kinesiology and Community Health, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, IL; and 3Department of Biostatistics, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC

Address for correspondence: John Staudenmayer, Ph.D., Department of Mathematics and Statistics, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Lederle Graduate Research Tower, Amherst, MA 01003; E-mail:

©2012The American College of Sports Medicine