Date Presented 04/21/2023

To validate the use of wearable sensors in measuring tummy time, recorded play sessions were compared with parent recall and sensor data. Significant correlations indicate that sensors can accurately report infant movement experiences with reduced bias.

Primary Author and Speaker: Jessica Manning

Additional Authors and Speakers: Ketaki Inamdar, Virginia W. Chu

Contributing Authors: Dhriti Thakur, Kayla Bowler

Parent report is typically used as a subjective measure of adherence to tummy time recommendations, and accelerometers can be used as an objective measurement of the same, but the concurrent validity of parent recall and accelerometers for measuring tummy time in the natural environment is not established. This study aims to establish the validity of parent recall and GENEActiv accelerometer for measuring tummy time compared to direct video observation. Thirty-two (19 full-term, 13 preterm) participants aged 3-6 months were recruited for this cross-sectional observational study using convenience sampling. Infants wore the GENEActiv sensor during video recorded play sessions for three days and parents completed a tummy time recall survey at the end of Day 3. The validity of the two measures was compared against video data using correlation analysis, Bland Altman plots, and mixed model analysis. Parent recall had a significant moderate correlation (r=0.54, p=0.002) with video for term infants, but was not correlated (p=0.23) with video for preterm infants. On average, parents of preterm infants overestimated tummy time by 22 minutes per day. The GENEActiv sensor was strongly correlated with video for both term and preterm infants (r’s>0.7, p’s<0.001) and absolute differences between the two measures were less than 3 minutes per day. Results indicate that subjective recall measures of tummy time can be used with caution in term infants. The GENEActiv sensor is a more valid and accurate measure of tummy time recall in both term and preterm infants. This research has important implications for clinical practice, as accurate measurements of tummy time dosage can inform a clinician’s data-driven intervention plans to support essential motor skill development, especially for preterm infants.


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