Research Study Abstract

Association Between Objectively-Measured Physical Activity and Sleep, NHANES 2005–2006

  • Added on December 1, 2011

Statement of Problem Epidemiological studies examining the association between physical activity and sleep have relied on self-report measures of physical activity and have primarily been conducted in older adults. Therefore, to address these gaps in the literature, the purpose of the present study was to examine the association between objectively-measured physical activity and a variety of self-reported sleeping parameters in a nationally representative sample of U.S. adults of all ages.

Methods Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2005–2006 were used in the analyses. 3081 adults ranging in age between 18 and 85 were included in the analyses. At the mobile examination center, participants were asked to wear an ActiGraph 7164 accelerometer on the right hip for 7 days following their examination. Questions on sleep were asked during the household interview.

Results After controlling for age, bmi, health status, smoking status, and depression, the relative risk of often feeling overly sleepy during the day compared to never feeling overly sleepy during the day decreased by a factor of 0.65 (95% CI: 0.44–0.97) for participants meeting physical activity guidelines compared to those not meeting guidelines. Similar results were also found for having leg cramps while sleeping and having difficulty concentrating when tired.

Conclusions Objectively-measured physical activity was associated with several self-reported sleeping-related parameters. Future experimental studies are required to confirm that increasing physical activity causes improvements in these parameters. Link to Abstract: