Using Wearable Devicesto Assess Physical Activity and Sleep Behavior in the Health and Retirement Study
Jessica Faul, MPH, PhD
Increasingly ithas become feasible to use wearable devices to assess physical activity,sedentary behavior, and sleep patterns among large numbers of participants inepidemiologic and cohort studies, allowing for more precise assessments ofthese behaviors and examination of their associations with healthoutcomes. In 2019, the Health andRetirement Study (HRS) used the GENEactiv wrist device to measure physicalactivity and sleep over 10 days among 380 pilot study participants. Devices were sent to and returned by consentingparticipants via mail along with a short questionnaire and sleep diary. Pilot-eligible participants and a sample ofcontrols also answered an expanded set of activity and sleep questions in their2018 and 2020 core HRS surveys so we could better assess selection into thepilot study and behavior effects post pilot. In this presentation we describe the methods used to collect and processthe accelerometer data. We also describethe quality of the accelerometer data collected, comparison of physicalactivity and sleep data collected from the devices with self-reported data, anddiscuss implications for administration in a longitudinal sample.