Sedentary behaviour profiling of office workers: a sensitivity analysis of sedentary cut-points

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Measuring sedentary behaviour and physical activity with wearable sensors provides detailed information on activity patterns and can serve health interventions. At the basis of activity analysis stands the ability to distinguish sedentary from active time. As there is no consensus regarding the optimal cut-point for classifying sedentary behaviour, we studied the consequences of using different cut-points for this type of analysis. We conducted a battery of sitting and walking activities with 14 office workers, wearing the Promove 3D activity sensor to determine the optimal cut-point (in counts per minute (m·s−2)) for classifying sedentary behaviour. Then, 27 office workers wore the sensor for five days. We evaluated the sensitivity of five sedentary pattern measures for various sedentary cut-points and found an optimal cut-point for sedentary behaviour of 1660 × 10−3 m·s−2. Total sedentary time was not sensitive to cut-point changes within ±10% of this optimal cut-point; other sedentary pattern measures were not sensitive to changes within the ±20% interval. The results from studies analyzing sedentary patterns, using different cut-points, can be compared within these boundaries. Furthermore, commercial, hip-worn activity trackers can implement feedback and interventions on sedentary behaviour patterns, using these cut-points.
Original languageEnglish
Article number22
Number of pages9
JournalSensors (Switzerland)
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 25 Dec 2015


  • office workers
  • field trial
  • laboratory trial
  • cut-point
  • EWI-26643
  • Accelerometer
  • Sedentary behavior
  • activity pattern
  • activity sensor
  • METIS-315132
  • IR-98889
  • BSS-Biomechatronics and rehabilitation technology


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