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Development of the Physical Activity Interactive Recall (PAIR) for Aboriginal children

Lucie Lévesque1*, Margaret Cargo2 and Jon Salsberg3

Author Affiliations

1 School of Physical and Health Education, Queen's University, Kingston (Ontario) K7L 3N6, Canada

2 Centre de recherche du Centre hospitalier de l'Université de Montréal (CHUM), Santé des populations, Bureau 302 - 3875, rue Saint-Urbain, Montréal (Québec), H2W 1T7, Canada

3 Kahnawake Schools Diabetes Prevention Project Centre for Research and Training, P.O. Box 989, Kahnawake, Québec, J0L 1B0, Canada

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International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity 2004, 1:8  doi:10.1186/1479-5868-1-8

Published: 29 March 2004



Aboriginal children in Canada are at increased risk for type 2 diabetes. Given that physical inactivity is an important modifiable risk factor for type 2 diabetes, prevention efforts targeting Aboriginal children include interventions to enhance physical activity involvement. These types of interventions require adequate assessment of physical activity patterns to identify determinants, detect trends, and evaluate progress towards intervention goals. The purpose of this study was to develop a culturally appropriate interactive computer program to self-report physical activity for Kanien'kehá:ka (Mohawk) children that could be administered in a group setting. This was an ancillary study of the ongoing Kahnawake Schools Diabetes Prevention Project (KSDPP).


During Phase I, focus groups were conducted to understand how children describe and graphically depict type, intensity and duration of physical activity. Sixty-six students (40 girls, 26 boys, mean age = 8.8 years, SD = 1.8) from four elementary schools in three eastern Canadian Kanien'kehá:ka communities participated in 15 focus groups. Children were asked to discuss and draw about physical activity. Content analysis of focus groups informed the development of a school-day and non-school-day version of the physical activity interactive recall (PAIR). In Phase II, pilot-tests were conducted in two waves with 17 and 28 children respectively to assess the content validity of PAIR. Observation, videotaping, and interviews were conducted to obtain children's feedback on PAIR content and format.


Children's representations of activity type and activity intensity were used to compile a total of 30 different physical activity and 14 non-physical activity response choices with accompanying intensity options. Findings from the pilot tests revealed that Kanien'kehá:ka children between nine and 13 years old could answer PAIR without assistance. Content validity of PAIR was judged to be adequate. PAIR was judged to be comprehensive, acceptable, and enjoyable by the children.


Results indicate that PAIR may be acceptable to children between nine and 13 years old, with most in this age range able to complete PAIR without assistance. The flexibility of its programming makes PAIR an easily adaptable tool to accommodate diverse populations, different seasons, and changing trends in physical activity involvement.