Occupation, hours worked, and leisure-time physical activity

Burton, NW and Turrell, G (2000) Occupation, hours worked, and leisure-time physical activity. Preventive Medicine, 31 6: 673-681. doi:10.1006/pmed.2000.0763

Author Burton, NW
Turrell, G
Title Occupation, hours worked, and leisure-time physical activity
Journal name Preventive Medicine   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0091-7435
Publication date 2000-01-01
Year available 2000
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1006/pmed.2000.0763
Open Access Status
Volume 31
Issue 6
Start page 673
End page 681
Total pages 9
Place of publication SAN DIEGO
Language eng
Abstract Background. International research indicates that blue-collar employees typically exhibit lower rates of leisure-time physical activity. While lack of time and work demands are commonly reported barriers to activity, the extent to which time-at-work mediates the relationship between occupation and leisure-time physical activity is unclear. This study investigated the association between occupation, time spent in paid employment, and participation in leisure-time physical activity. Methods. This was a secondary analysis of cross-sectional data from the 1995 Australian Health Survey, focusing on employed persons ages 18-64 years (n = 24,454), Occupation was coded as per the Australian Standard Classification of Occupations and collapsed into three categories (professional, white-collar, blue-collar). Hours worked was categorized into eight levels, ranging from 1-14 to more than 50 h per week. Participation in leisure-time physical activity was categorized as either insufficient or sufficient for health, consistent with recommended levels of energy expenditure (1600 METS-min/fortnight). The relationship between occupation, hours worked, and leisure-time physical activity was examined using logistic regression. Analyses were conducted separately for male and female, and the results are presented as a series of models that successively adjust for a range of potential covariates: age, living arrangement, smoking status, body mass index, and self-reported health. Results. Individuals in blue-collar occupations were approximately 50% more likely to be classified as insufficiently active. This occupational variability in leisure-time physical activity was not explained by hours worked. There was a suggested relationship between hours worked and leisure-time physical activity; however, this differed between men and women, and was difficult to interpret. Conclusions. Occupational variability in leisure-time physical activity cannot be explained by hours worked. Therefore, reports that work constitutes a barrier to participation should be explored further. Identification of the factors contributing to occupational variability in leisure-time physical activity will add to our understanding of why population subgroups differ in their health risk profiles, and assist in the development of health promotion strategies to reduce rates of sedentariness and health inequalities. (C) 2000 American Health Foundation and Academic Press.
Keyword Public, Environmental & Occupational Health
Medicine, General & Internal
Hours Worked
Physical Activity
Health Inequalities
Coronary Heart-disease
Socioeconomic Inequalities
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Unknown

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 135 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 157 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Mon, 13 Aug 2007, 22:06:51 EST