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NHANES Physical Activity and Cardiovascular Fitness Data Tutorial

Preparing an Analytic Dataset

Analysts working with the NHANES physical activity and cardiovascular fitness data may want to ask questions such as:

  • How do total weekly minutes of physical activity as reported by NHANES participants compare to the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans?
  • What is the average maximal oxygen uptake (i.e., VO2 max) among NHANES participants?
  • Using data from a physical activity monitor, how do the average daily counts vary by Body Mass Index among NHANES participants?

To begin answering these and other questions related to the physical activity and cardiovascular fitness data, you will need to prepare an analytic dataset.  Preparing such a dataset involves following a critical set of steps that often may be more time-consuming than the analysis itself.  Because the physical activity questionnaire, cardiovascular fitness, and physical activity monitor data have distinct idiosyncrasies, Course 2 will guide you through the process of preparing an analytic dataset for each data type.

The Preparing an Analytic Dataset course includes three modules, each of which focuses on a single type of data:

Each module will guide you through the following six tasks:

  • Locate Variables
  • Download Data
  • Merge & Append Datasets
  • Review Data & Create New Variables
  • Format & Label Variables
  • Save a Dataset

Previous Courses

Before you get started:

Orientation to the Website

On the Navigation Bar to the Left:

  • Check out the Objectives to orient yourself to the tutorial’s content.
  • Read the Introduction to find answers to frequently asked questions about the NHANES physical activity and cardiovascular fitness data and this tutorial.
  • Go to Knowledge & Skills for information about the basic knowledge and skills required to use this tutorial as a self learning tool.
  • Go to Technical & Software Requirements for information about what’s required to properly view the tutorial and how to run the sample programs.  This section also includes information to assist you with technical problems that may arise.


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