Pedometer may measure physical activity levels in older adults with ID

By Thessa Hilgenkamp, PhD
Erasmus Medical Center, Netherlands

We know very little about physical activity patterns of older adults with intellectual disabilities (ID). We wanted to find out how to reliably estimate number of steps a person takes during the week.

What did you do in your research?

A total of 265 participants wore a pedometer for 14 days.

What did you find out?
We found that any 4 days of wearing a pedometer (days do not have to be consecutive) was sufficient to predict number of steps taken during the week in older adults with ID.

What are the take-home messages?
High quality pedometer that can measure steps reliably at slow walking speeds and in overweight participants can be used to estimate physical activity levels in older adults with ID. Pedometers can be used in community based organizations to motivate individuals with ID to increase their physical activity levels.

To learn more about these findings contact
Thessa Hilgenkamp.

Full Journal Article
Hilgenkamp, T., Wijck, R., & Evenhuis, H. (2021). Measuring Physical Activity with Pedometers in Older Adults with Intellectual Disability: Reactivity and Number of Days. American Journal on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, 50(4), 343–351.