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Physical Activity Change during COVID-19 Confinement

Health, Physical Activity and Sports Science Laboratory, Department of Physical Activity and Sports, Faculty of Psychology and Education, University of Deusto, 48007 Bizkaia, Spain
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(18), 6878;
Received: 17 July 2020 / Revised: 10 September 2020 / Accepted: 11 September 2020 / Published: 21 September 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Health Behavior, Chronic Disease and Health Promotion)
Background: The lockdown and social distancing caused by COVID-19 may influence common health behavior. The unprecedent worldwide confinement, in which Spain has been one of the most affected—with severe rules governing confinement—may have changed physical activity (PA) and sedentary habits due to prolonged stays at home. Purpose: The aim of this study is to evaluate how self-reported PA and sedentary time (ST) have changed during confinement in the Spanish population. Methods: 3800 healthy adults (age 18–64 years) residing in Spain answered the international physical activity questionnaire short (IPAQ-S) twice between 23 March and 1 April (confinement). Data analysis was carried out taking into consideration meeting general PA recommendations before confinement, age and gender. Results: Self-reported PA decreased significantly during confinement in our sample. Vigorous physical activities (VPA) and walking time decreased by 16.8% (p < 0.001) and 58.2% (p < 0.001), respectively, whereas ST increased by 23.8% (p < 0.001). The percent of people fulfilling the 75 min/week of VPA recommendation decreased by 10.7% (p < 0.001) while the percent of people who reached 150 min/week of moderate activity barely changed (1.4%). The group that performed the most VPA before confinement showed the greatest decrease (30.5%, p < 0.001). Men reduced time in VPA more than women (21% vs 9%, respectively) who even increased time in moderate PA by 11% (p < 0.05) and reported less increase in ST than men (35% vs 25.3%, respectively). Conclusion: The Spanish adult population, especially young people, students and very active men, decreased daily self-reported PA and increased ST during COVID-19 confinement. View Full-Text
Keywords: confinement; physical activity; sedentary behavior; Covid-19 confinement; physical activity; sedentary behavior; Covid-19
MDPI and ACS Style

Castañeda-Babarro, A.; Arbillaga-Etxarri, A.; Gutiérrez-Santamaría, B.; Coca, A. Physical Activity Change during COVID-19 Confinement. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 6878.

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