Validity of a modified CHAMPS physical activity questionnaire among African-Americans

Ken Resnicow, Frances McCarty, Dhana Blissett, Terry Wang, Carrie Heitzler, Rebecca E. Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

101 Scopus citations


Purpose: Valid methods for assessing physical activity (PA) patterns are essential for accurate evaluation of intervention programs and population surveillance. Numerous self-report PA instruments have been validated in white adults; however, few studies have reported validity in African-Americans. Methods: Data are from the Healthy Body/Healthy Spirit Trial, a study to increase fruit and vegetable intake and physical activity among adults in 17 black churches. Participants completed a modified version of the CHAMPS activity recall as well as components of the Yale Physical Activity Survey and the Paffenberger Activity Questionnaire. The modified CHAMPS was scored to yield four indices: moderate to vigorous physical activities (MET value ≥ 3.0), vigorous activities (MET value ≥ 5.0), "Sports and Recreational Activities," and all activities. Estimated VO2 maximum was obtained by submaximal treadmill test in 138 participants, 109 females and 29 males. Results: With the exception of moderate to vigorous activities, the modified CHAMPS indices were significantly correlated with estimated maximum VO2. Highest correlations were observed for the index of vigorous and sports-related activities, 0.19 and 0.32, respectively. Activity measures were generally uncorrelated with blood pressure, body mass index, or total cholesterol. For the CHAMPS indices, correlations with VO2max and other physiologic variables were generally higher for males than females as well as those with income < $30,000 and for those participants who did not complete college. Conclusion: Responses from the modified CHAMPS were moderately correlated with estimated VO2max, with higher correlations for vigorous activity and recreational sports indices. The instrument may be useful for assessing physical activity among African-Americans. Stronger correlations for individuals with lower income and educational attainment was an unexpected finding that merits further examination.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1537-1545
Number of pages9
JournalMedicine and science in sports and exercise
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Assessment
  • Exercise
  • Measurement
  • Methods
  • Validity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation


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