The EuroFIT consortium published “Feasibility of a real-time self-monitoring device for sitting less and moving more: a randomised controlled trial” in the BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine journal on the 29 August 2017.
The study authors were Anne Martin, Jacob M Adams, Christopher Bunn, Jason M R Gill, Cindy M Gray, Kate Hunt, Douglas J Maxwell, Hidde P van der Ploeg, Sally Wyke, and Nanette Mutrie.
Trial objectives: Time spent inactive and sedentary are both associated with poor health. Self-monitoring of walking, using pedometers for real-time feedback, is effective at increasing physical activity. This study evaluated the feasibility of a new pocket-worn sedentary time and physical activity real-time self-monitoring device (SitFIT).
Methods: Forty sedentary men were equally randomised into two intervention groups. For 4 weeks, one group received a SitFIT providing feedback on steps and time spent sedentary (lying/sitting); the other group received a SitFIT providing feedback on steps and time spent upright (standing/stepping). Change in sedentary time, standing time, stepping time and step count were assessed using activPAL monitors at designated time intervals. Semistructured interviews were conducted after 4 and 12 weeks.
Results: The SitFIT was reported as acceptable and usable and seen as a motivating tool to reduce sedentary time by both groups. On average, the two groups of participants reduced their sedentary time by 7.8 minutes/day and by 8.2 minutes/day. They increased their standing time by 23.2 minutes/day and 16.2 minutes/day. Stepping time was increased by 8.5 minutes/day and 9.0 minutes/day.
Conclusion: The novel real-time self-monitoring device, the SitFIT, was perceived as a useful and practical tool for changing sedentary time, upright time and step count. The SitFIT, in combination with other behaviour change techniques, encouraged small improvements in the number of steps and time spent sedentary and standing in a short intervention. Our fully powered trial will further investigate this. The SitFIT seems a promising tool for integration in more intensive intervention programmes.
Prof Nanette Mutrie, Chair in Physical Activity for Health, Sport, Physical Education and Health Sciences (SPEHS) at the University of Edinburgh commented, ‘The results from this pilot trial gave us confidence in the use of the SitFIT and guided us to the best displays for this device for the main trial.’
Read the entire open access paper here.