Formative Assessment: Design of a Web-Connected Sedentary Behavior Intervention for Females.

Academic Article


  • BACKGROUND: Sedentary behavior (SB) is a significant risk factor for heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and early mortality, particularly among women, and the health consequences associated with SB are independent of physical activity status. Interventions utilizing wearable technologies can improve SB, but their effectiveness is influenced by individual preferences, device engagement strategies, and technological features, which may affect user compliance. Gathering a priori insight from target populations on their preferences for program tools and strategies may assist researchers in identifying effective methods to improve the efficacy of SB interventions. OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to (1) explore the likeability (likes and dislikes) and usability (engagement intentions and navigation) of a wearable device (Movband) and its accompanying website (dashboard), (2) examine social incentive preferences (teammates), and (3) assess the feasibility (participants' experiences during an activity-monitoring period) of these tools for use in an intervention to reduce SB in girls and women. METHODS: A total of 9 girls (mean age: 8.9 years, standard deviation [SD] 1.1 years) and 11 college-aged women (mean age: 22.6 years, SD 3.2 years) participated in this study. Separate focus groups were held for girls and women, and all participants attended one before and the other following a 7-day activity-monitoring period. During the focus groups, participants were prompted with questions to address the study aims, and the nominal group technique was used to compile lists of group-specific preferences for the activity-monitoring system. The top three ranking likes and dislikes were reverse coded to determine likeability. RESULTS: The top-ranking responses for the girls and women were the following: visual display of movements and ease of navigation (dashboard like), boring to look at and no calorie-tracking function (dashboard dislike), backlight and long battery life (Movband like), and color and not waterproof (tied for girls) and vertical time display (Movband dislike). Additionally, participants identified several aesthetic preferences and functional limitations. At the second focus group visit, the majority of the participants self-reported less SB during the previous week. Objective data from the activity-monitoring period revealed that the average steps per day for girls and women were 12,373.4 (SD 2617.6) and 8515.8 (SD 3076.7), respectively. CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that the girls and women liked many features of the Movband and dashboard. However, several dislikes were mentioned, which may negatively influence compliance and the effectiveness of the activity-monitoring system and require improvements before using in an SB intervention.
  • Authors

    Published In

  • JMIR Human Factors  Journal
  • Keywords

  • health promotion, motivation, qualitative research, sedentary lifestyle
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Kinsey AW; Whipple M; Reid L; Affuso O
  • Start Page

  • e28
  • Volume

  • 4
  • Issue

  • 4