Comparing ActiGraph equations for estimating energy expenditure in older adults

Nicolas Aguilar-Farias*, G. M.E.E.(Geeske) Peeters, Robert J. Brychta, Kong Y. Chen, Wendy J. Brown

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


Accurate estimation of energy expenditure (EE) from accelerometer outputs remains a challenge in older adults. The aim of this study was to validate different ActiGraph (AG) equations for predicting EE in older adults. Forty older adults (age = 77.4 ± 8.1 yrs) completed a set of household/gardening activities in their residence, while wearing an AG at the hip (GT3X+) and a portable calorimeter (MetaMax 3B–criterion). Predicted EEs from AG were calculated using five equations (Freedson, refined Crouter, Sasaki and Santos-Lozano (vertical-axis, vectormagnitude)). Accuracy of equations was assessed using root-mean-square error (RMSE) and mean bias. The Sasaki equation showed the lowest RMSE for all activities (0.47 METs) and across physical activity intensities (PAIs) (range 0.18–0.48 METs). The Freedson and Santos-Lozano equations tended to overestimate EE for sedentary activities (range: 0.48 to 0.97 METs), while EEs for moderate-to-vigorous activities (MVPA) were underestimated (range: −1.02 to −0.64 METs). The refined Crouter and Sasaki equations showed no systematic bias, but they respectively overestimated and underestimated EE across PAIs. In conclusion, none of the equations was completely accurate for predicting EE across the range of PAIs. However, the refined Crouter and Sasaki equations showed better overall accuracy and precision when compared with the other methods.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)188-195
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Sports Sciences
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 17 Jan 2019
Externally publishedYes


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