Physical activity levels among adult computer users

Gerald J. Jerome, Edward McAuley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


As computer use becomes prevalent at work and in leisure pursuits it presents a potential barrier to regular physical activity. However an individual's confidence in overcoming such barriers may moderate the relationship between computer use and physical activity levels. This study examined the associations among computer use, self-efficacy in overcoming barriers to exercise, and physical activity levels among adult computer users. Participants (N = 615) were recruited through national email and newsletters announcements, and completed standardized self-report questionnaires online. Computer use was not associated with meeting physical activity guidelines (adjusted odds ratio, AOR = 0.63-1.00, n.s.). Among leisure computer users, the moderate efficacy group (AOR = 3.72, 95% CI = 1.59-8.69) and the high efficacy group (AOR = 5.31, 95% CI = 2.37-11.91) had higher odds of meeting physical activity guidelines compared to the low efficacy group. Among the work related computer users, the high efficacy group (AOR = 2.83, 95% CI = 1.18-6.77) had higher odds of meeting physical activity guidelines than the low efficacy group. These results suggest that barriers posed by high levels of computer use are surmountable. Efforts to increase efficacy in overcoming barriers to exercise may be more practical and have a greater impact on physical activity levels than trying to decrease computer use among adults.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1207-1210
Number of pages4
JournalComputers in Human Behavior
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2011


  • Barriers
  • Computers
  • Exercise
  • Internet
  • Physical activity
  • Self-efficacy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Psychology(all)


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