Background Health effects of sedentary behaviors (SB) may vary depending on their characteristics such as type, purpose, duration, and intensity of the behavior. While a growing number of questionnaires assess sedentary behaviors, it is unclear which characteristics of SB are measured. The aim of this review was to examine the content of self-report SB questionnaires. Methods Three databases were searched for sedentary behavior questionnaires published before January 1st, 2016. Based on the inclusion criteria, 82 articles out of 1369 were retrieved for a total of 60 questionnaires. For each questionnaire, the sedentary behavior characteristics identified were reported and analyzed. Results Most of the questionnaires assessed the time (n = 60), posture (n = 54), purpose (n = 46) and the types (n = 45) of SB performed. Fewer questionnaires assessed the environment (n = 20) social context (n = 11), status (n = 2), and associated behaviors (n = 2) related to sedentary behaviors. All the questionnaires except two assessed time spent in SB with 17 assessing frequency and 6 assessing breaks in SB. The most frequent characteristics identified in the questionnaires were the categories of sitting (90%), a day (95%), watching television (65%) and using a computer (55%). Many characteristics of SB were not measured. Conclusions By knowing the breadth of SB included in questionnaires, this review provides support to shape the design of new questionnaires designed to reduce the gaps in measuring sedentary behaviors.
ASJC Scopus subject areas