Criterion validity of the Physical Activity Scale (PAS2) in Danish adults

E S L Pedersen, L H Mortensen, S Brage, A L Bjerregaard, M Aadahl

16 Citations (Scopus)


BACKGROUND: The Physical Activity Scale (PAS2) was developed to measure physical activity (PA) during work, transportation and leisure time, in the Danish adult population. The objective of this study was to assess the criterion validity of PAS2 against a combined accelerometer and heart rate monitor in Danish adults and to investigate if the criterion validity differed by socio-demographic factors and body mass index.

METHOD: A total of 330 Danish adults (mean age = 46.7 years, 38.5% men) participating in the Health2008 study completed the PAS2 questionnaire and wore a combined accelerometer and heart rate sensor for seven days. Average daily estimates from PAS2 were categorised into time spent in sedentary behaviour, light PA, moderate PA and vigorous PA and were compared to the objective measures.

RESULTS: PAS2 accounted for 19.5 hours/day on average. Time spent in sedentary behaviour, light and moderate-intensity PA was weakly correlated with objective data (polychoric correlation coefficients (PCC): 0.18-0.20), whereas vigorous intensity PA was moderately correlated (PCC: 0.54, p = 0.04). Mean bias was -2.3 hours/day (95% limits of agreement (LoA): -9.04 to 4.34) for sedentary behaviour, 1.68 hours/day (LoA: 8.02 to -4.62) for light activity, 0.55 hours/day (LoA: 3.37 to -2.26) for moderate activity and 0.12 hours/day (LoA: 0.57 to 0.33) for vigorous activity. Criterion validity was lower in women, in participants who were above 40 years, overweight, had short education and were unemployed.

CONCLUSIONS: PAS2 overestimated time spent on light, moderate and vigorous intensity PA and underestimated time spent on sedentary behaviour. Validity differed by key socio-demographic characteristics.

Original languageEnglish
JournalScandinavian Journal of Public Health
Issue number7
Pages (from-to)726-734
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • Journal Article


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