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Culturally-specific physical activity measures for Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islanders.

  • Author(s): Moy, Karen L;
  • Sallis, James F;
  • Tanjasiri, Sora P
  • et al.
Creative Commons 'BY' version 4.0 license


Physical activity is an important contributor to the health disparities experienced by Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (NHPI) populations. A culturally-specific measurement instrument that minimizes interpretation bias is necessary to obtain accurate assessments of this lifestyle behavior. The purpose of this study was to 1) create two versions of the Pacific Islander Physical Activity Questionnaire (PIPAQ-short and PIPAQ-long) for United States NHPI, and 2) pilot test the PIPAQ instruments and two objective physical activity monitors to evaluate cultural-appropriateness and acceptability.


Forty NHPI adults (20M, 20F) aged 21-65 years attended focus group discussions addressing cultural perspectives related to physical activity. Feedback from participants, community leaders and physical activity experts guided cultural modifications to existing questionnaires to create PIPAQ-short and PIPAQ-long with accompanying showcards. Pilot testing of both PIPAQs and two objective physical activity monitors, the Actiheart and ActiTrainer, was carried out in another sample of 32 NHPI adults (17M, 15F) aged 18-63 years. Participants were instructed to wear one monitor for ≥10 hours/day for 7 consecutive days. At the follow-up visit, participants completed PIPAQ-short and PIPAQ-long, and a written and verbal exit interview to provide feedback on both subjective and objective instruments.


The majority of participants felt PIPAQ-long provided a more accurate reflection of activity levels, compared to PIPAQ-short. The Actiheart was the preferred monitor due to higher comfort and lower participant burden. Self-reported duration of physical activities was most difficult to recall, compared to activity type, frequency and intensity.


Both PIPAQ instruments and the Actiheart monitor have demonstrated cultural acceptability and appropriateness for NHPI adults. Future studies will investigate the validity and reliability of both PIPAQ instruments in larger samples of NHPI adults.

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