We are a research group within the Department of Public and Occupational Health of the VU University Medical Center in Amsterdam. Our research deals with the relationship between physical activity and health. Sufficient levels of physical activity are a necessity for good health, but also entail a risk of injury.
Hidde P. van der Ploeg and Melvyn Hillsdon recently published a paper in the International Journal of Bahavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity that summarizes both the arguments in favour and against the general statement of the debate: “Is sedentary behaviour just physical inactivity by another name?”
2017 was a great for the team in terms of publications. We have been involved in 59 peer reviewed publications that saw the day of light last year; 34 on the topic 'sports & health', and 25 on the topic of 'physical activity & health'. We have started 2018 with flying inspiration, so we hope to reach out with great work in the coming months again.
As the detrimental health effects of sedentary behaviour are well established, insight into the individual and environmental factors that influence adults’ sedentary behaviour is needed. Most studies to date rely on self-reported measures of sedentary time. Therefore, the aim of our most recently published study was to examine the individual and environmental correlates of objectively measured sedentary time in Dutch and Belgian adults.
The physical neighbourhood environment may influence adults’ sedentary behaviour. Yet, most studies examining the association between the physical neighbourhood environment and sedentary behaviour rely on self-reported data of either the physical neighbourhood environment and/or sedentary behaviour. The aim of our most recent study was to investigate the associations between objectively measured physical environmental neighbourhood factors and accelerometer-determined total sedentary time in adults.
Just today the latest 'trailer' on the EuroFit project got released. This video introduces the EuroFit FP7 project - an EU funded research project that seeks to improve men's health by leveraging their ambition to their football clubs.
The ink on this one is still wet. Dirk Dessing and his SchoolZones team just published this study that aimed to increase our understanding of environmental correlates associated with route choice during active transportation to school (ATS). They compared characteristics of actual walking and cycling routes between home and school with the shortest possible route to school.
Evidence on the detrimental health effects of prolonged sedentary behavior is accumulating. Interventions need to have a specific focus on sedentary behavior in order to generate clinically meaningful decreases in sedentary time. When evaluating such intervention, the question whether a participant improved or deteriorated their behavior is fundamental and instruments that are able to detect those changes are essential. Therefore, the aim of this study was to determine the criterion validity against activPAL and responsiveness to change of two activity monitors (ActiGraph and activPAL) and two questionnaires for the assessment of occupational sitting and standing time.
On november 24th, Laura Viester will defend her thesis on worksite health promotion in the construction industry. This project was carried in a joint effort between our research group, the research group Work and Health of our department and TNO.
Gestational diabetes mellitus is associated with increased risk of adverse perinatal outcomes. Despite this relationship, ways to prevent gestational diabetes mellitus remain unproven. A recent multicenter pilot study, which was co-authored by Judith Jelsma and Mireille van Poppel from our group, compared the impact of three lifestyle interventions on gestational diabetes mellitus risk; healthy eating [HE], physical activity [PA], and both HE and PA [HE+PA].
The relationship between physical activity and academic performance is a hot topic in contemporary PA literature. Does PA lead to an increased ability to study and acquire cognitive skills? The discussion is still open, and evidence for an acute effect of physical activity on cognitive performance within the school setting is limited. We set out to provide previously untold arguments in favour of PA. The purpose of this study was to gain insight into acute effects of a short physical activity bout on selective attention in primary school children, specifically in the school setting.