Job design and ethnic differences in working women's physical activity
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OBJECTIVE: To document the role job control and schedule control play in shaping women's physical activity, and how it delineates educational and racial variability in associations of job and social control with physical activity. METHODS: Prospective data were obtained from a community-based sample of working women (N = 302). Validated instruments measured job control and schedule control. Steps per day were assessed using New Lifestyles 800 activity monitors. RESULTS: Greater job control predicted more steps per day, whereas greater schedule control predicted fewer steps. Small indirect associations between ethnicity and physical activity were observed among women with a trade school degree or less but not for women with a college degree. CONCLUSIONS: Low job control created barriers to physical activity among working women with a trade school degree or less. Greater schedule control predicted less physical activity, suggesting women do not use time "created" by schedule flexibility for personal health enhancement.
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