The feasibility of ambulatory screen time in children

Robin R. Mellecker, Alison M. McManus, Lorraine M. Lanningham-Foster, James A. Levine

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Purpose. A walking media station was developed, which enables normally seated screen activities to be conducted whilst walking. This study tests feasibility of the walking media station and provides preliminary evidence of the acceptability of the device in the home environment. Methods. Twenty-nine healthy children (mean age 9.6 years) participated in the testing of the newly developed walking media station in the laboratory and in the home environment. Results. Steady gait walking at1 was achieved by all the children in less than 1 minute. There was no significant difference between computer game score during seated and walking play modes and no increase in energy cost when computer game play was added to walking (p > 0.05). When given the choice in the home, all chose to use the walking media station rather than play seated. When asked: "If this unit were yours to keep forever, would you play video games on it?" all responded affirmatively. Conclusion. These data demonstrate that when given a walking media station, children can and will use it. Re-engineering regular walking into otherwise seated gaming minimizes disruption to normal routines and provides an innovative and creative opportunity for further investigation into the sustainability and clinical outcomes of reducing sitting time and increasing physical activity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)106-111
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Pediatric Obesity
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2009


  • Energy expenditure
  • Physical activity
  • Play and playthings
  • Video games
  • Walking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Health Policy
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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