Sleep and Breathing

, Volume 17, Issue 4, pp 1257–1266 | Cite as

Physical activity and sedentary time in persons with obstructive sleep apnea and overweight enrolled in a randomized controlled trial for enhanced physical activity and healthy eating

  • Helena Igelström
  • Margareta Emtner
  • Eva Lindberg
  • Pernilla Åsenlöf
Original Article



The aim of the study was to describe the amount of physical activity and sedentary time in patients with obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS) and overweight and to explore potential disease-related and psychological correlates.


A descriptive and correlational study was performed. Prospective data of physical activity and sedentary time were collected through accelerometry, and body mass index (BMI), daytime sleepiness, exercise self-efficacy, fear of movement, and depressive symptoms were measured at one point. Seventy-three participants with overweight (mean BMI, 35 kg/m2 (5 SD)) and moderate/severe OSAS (apnea–hypopnea index ≥15) were consecutively recruited. Multivariate associations were determined through multiple linear regression analysis.


The participants took a daily average of 7,734 (3,528 SD) steps, spent an average of 77 min (54 SD) in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA), and spent 11 h and 45 min (2 h and 8 min SD) sedentary. BMI, daytime sleepiness, exercise self-efficacy, fear of movement, and depressive symptoms did not explain variance in MVPA or steps but explained 22.9 % of variance in sedentary time. In backward selection analysis, BMI contributed to the explanatory degree of MVPA with 9 % whereas, fear of movement explained 6.3 % of the variance in steps and 14.3 % of the variance in sedentary time.


An important implication for future physical activity interventions is that both physical activity and sedentary behaviors should be targeted, and fear of movement may be an important determinant for change in patients with OSAS and overweight.


Sleep apnea Overweight Physical activity Sedentary time Accelerometer 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Helena Igelström
    • 1
  • Margareta Emtner
    • 1
    • 2
  • Eva Lindberg
    • 2
  • Pernilla Åsenlöf
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Neuroscience; PhysiotherapyUppsala UniversityUppsalaSweden
  2. 2.Department of Medical Sciences; Respiratory Medicine and AllergologyUppsala UniversityUppsalaSweden

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