Spatial configurations of office environments assessed by Space Syntax methodologies are related to employee movement patterns. These methods require analysis of floors plans which are not readily available in large population-based studies or otherwise unavailable. Therefore a self-report instrument to assess spatial configurations of office environments using four scales was developed.
The scales are: local connectivity (16 items), overall connectivity (11 items), visibility of co-workers (10 items), and proximity of co-workers (5 items). A panel cohort (N = 1154) completed an online survey, only data from individuals employed in office-based occupations (n = 307) were used to assess scale measurement properties. To assess test-retest reliability a separate sample of 37 office-based workers completed the survey on two occasions 7.7 (±3.2) days apart. Redundant scale items were eliminated using factor analysis; Chronbach’s α was used to evaluate internal consistency and test re-test reliability (retest-ICC). ANOVA was employed to examine differences between office types (Private, Shared, Open) as a measure of construct validity. Generalized Linear Models were used to examine relationships between spatial configuration scales and the duration of and frequency of breaks in occupational sitting.
The number of items on all scales were reduced, Chronbach’s α and ICCs indicated good scale internal consistency and test re-test reliability: local connectivity (5 items; α = 0.70; retest-ICC = 0.84), overall connectivity (6 items; α = 0.86; retest-ICC = 0.87), visibility of co-workers (4 items; α = 0.78; retest-ICC = 0.86), and proximity of co-workers (3 items; α = 0.85; retest-ICC = 0.70). Significant (p ≤ 0.001) differences, in theoretically expected directions, were observed for all scales between office types, except overall connectivity. Significant associations were observed between all scales and occupational sitting behaviour (p ≤ 0.05).
All scales have good measurement properties indicating the instrument may be a useful alternative to Space Syntax to examine environmental correlates of occupational sitting in population surveys.
Sitting; Correlates; Workplace; Environment; Spatial configuration
Evidence suggests engaging in regular physical activity (PA) can have beneficial outcomes for adults with type 2 diabetes (TD2), including weight loss, reduction of medication usage and improvements in hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c)/fasting glucose. While a number of clinical-based PA interventions exist, community-based approaches are limited. The objective of this study is to conduct a systematic review with meta-analysis to assess the effectiveness of community-based PA interventions for the treatment of TD2 in adult populations. A search of peer-reviewed publications from 2002 to June 2012 was conducted across several electronic databases to identify interventions evaluated in community settings. Twenty-two studies were identified, and 11 studies reporting HbA1c as an outcome measure were pooled in the meta-analysis. Risk of bias assessment was also conducted. The findings demonstrate community-based PA interventions can be effective in producing increases in PA. Meta-analysis revealed a lowering of HbA1c levels by −0.32% [95% CI −0.65, 0.01], which approached statistical significance (p < 0.06). Our findings can guide future PA community-based interventions in adult populations diagnosed with TD2.
type two diabetes; physical activity; community-based intervention; treatment; HbA1c
Over half of kidney cancer survivors (KCS) are completely inactive and only a quarter are meeting physical activity (PA) guidelines. This highlights the need to identify and understand the determinants of PA in this understudied population. The purpose of this study is to determine the social cognitive correlates of PA intention and behavior in KCS using the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB).
All 1,985 KCS diagnosed between 1996 and 2010 in Alberta, Canada were mailed a self-report survey that consisted of the Godin Leisure Time Exercise Questionnaire and standard TPB items for intention, planning, perceived behavioral control (PBC), affective and instrumental attitudes, and descriptive and injunctive norms. Standard demographic and medical variables were also collected.
Completed surveys were received from 703 of 1,654 (43%) eligible KCS. The TPB was tested using structural equation modelling and demonstrated an adequate-to-good fit to the data [χ² = 256.88, p < .001; TLI = 0.97; CFI = 0.98; RMSEA = 0.06, 90% CI = 0.05-0.06].
There were significant pathways to PA from PBC (ß = 0.18, p = 0.02), planning (ß = 0.22, p < 0.01), and intention (ß = 0.31, p < 0.01); and to planning from intention (ß = 0.81, p < 0.01). In addition, there were significant model pathways to intention from instrumental attitude (ß = 0.28, p = 0.03), descriptive norm (ß = 0.09, p = 0.01), and PBC (ß = 0.52, p < 0.01). Overall, the TPB accounted for 69%, 63%, and 42% of the variance in intention, planning and PA, respectively.
The TPB appears to be a useful model for explaining PA in KCS. All TPB constructs except injunctive norm and affective attitude were useful for explaining intention with PBC emerging as the largest correlate. Developing PA interventions based on the TPB may be effective in promoting PA in KCS and may lead to important improvements in health.
Exercise; Motivation; Social cognitive models; Correlates
While strong and consistent evidence supports the role of lifestyle modification in the prevention and management of type 2 diabetes (T2DM), the best strategies for program implementation to support lifestyle modification within primary care remain to be determined. The objective of the study is to evaluate the implementation of an evidence-based self- management program for patients with T2DM within a newly established primary care network (PCN) environment.
Using a non-randomized design, participants (total N = 110 per group) will be consecutively allocated in bi-monthly blocks to either a 6-month self-management program lead by an Exercise Specialist or to usual care. Our primary outcome is self-reported physical activity and pedometer steps.
The present study will assess whether a diabetes self-management program lead by an Exercise Specialist provided within a newly emerging model of primary care and linked to available community-based resources, can lead to positive changes in self-management behaviours for adults with T2DM. Ultimately, our work will serve as a platform upon which an emerging model of primary care can incorporate effective and efficient chronic disease management practices that are sustainable through partnerships with local community partners.
Clinical Trials Registration
ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT00991380
Type 2 diabetes; Primary care; Physical activity; Diet; Exercise specialist; Health service research
Interventions for obese adolescents in real-world, clinical settings need to be evaluated because most weight management care occurs in this context.
To determine whether a lifestyle intervention that includes motivational interviewing and cognitive behavioural therapy (Health Initiatives Program [HIP]) leads to weight management that is superior to a similar lifestyle intervention (Youth Lifestyle Program [YLP]) that does not include these techniques; and to determine whether the HIP and YLP interventions are superior to a wait list control (WLC) group.
Obese adolescents were randomly assigned to a YLP (n=15), HIP (n=17) or WLC (n=14) group. The YLP and HIP were 16-session, one-on-one interventions. The primary outcome was the percentage change of body mass index z-score.
Completers-only analyses revealed 3.9% (YLP) and 6.5% (HIP) decreases in the percentage change of body mass index z-score compared with a 0.8% (WLC) increase (P<0.001). Levels of attrition did not differ among groups, but were relatively high (approximately 20% to 40%).
Lifestyle interventions delivered in a real-world, clinical setting led to short-term improvements in the obesity status of adolescents.
Adolescent; Intervention; Obesity
Purpose. The purpose of this study was to assess rural and urban differences in the dietary intakes, physical activity levels and weight status of a large sample of Canadian youth in both 2005 and 2008. Materials and Methods. A cross-sectional study of rural and urban adolescents (n = 10, 023) in Alberta was conducted in both 2005 and 2008 using a web-based survey. Results. There was an overall positive change in nutrient intakes between 2005 and 2008; however, rural residents generally had a poorer nutrient profile than urban residents (P < .001). They consumed less fibre and a greater percent energy from saturated fat. The mean physical activity scores increased among rural youth between 2005 and 2008 (P < .001), while remaining unchanged among urban youth. Residence was significantly related to weight status in 2005 (P = .017), but not in 2008. Conclusion. Although there were small improvements in nutrient intakes from 2005 to 2008, several differences in the lifestyle behaviours of adolescents living in rural and urban areas were found. The results of this study emphasize the importance of making policy and program recommendations to support healthy lifestyle behaviours within the context of the environments in which adolescents live.
Due to early detection and advances in treatment, the number of women surviving breast cancer is increasing. Whilst there are many positive aspects of improved survival, breast cancer survival is associated with many long-term health and psychosocial sequelae. Engaging in regular physical activity post-diagnosis can reduce this burden. Despite this evidence, the majority of breast cancer survivors do not engage in regular physical activity. The challenge is to provide breast cancer survivors with appealing and effective physical activity support in a sustainable and cost-effective way. This article describes the protocol for the Move More for Life Study, which aims to assess the relative efficacy of two promising theory-based, print interventions designed to promote regular physical activity amongst breast cancer survivors.
Method and design
Breast cancer survivors were recruited from across Australia. Participants will be randomised into one of three groups: (1) A tailored-print intervention group, (2) a targeted-print intervention group, or (3) a standard recommendation control group. Participants in the tailored-print intervention group will receive 3 tailored newsletters in the mail over a three month period. Participants in the targeted-print group will receive a previously developed physical activity guidebook designed specifically for breast cancer survivors immediately after baseline. Participants in the standard recommendation control will receive a brochure detailing the physical activity guidelines for Australian adults. All participants will be assessed at baseline, and at 4 and 10 months post-baseline. Intervention efficacy for changing the primary outcomes (mins/wk aerobic physical activity; sessions/exercises per week resistance physical activity) and secondary outcomes (steps per day, health-related quality life, compliance with physical activity guidelines, fatigue) will be assessed. Mediation and moderation analyses will also be conducted.
Given the growing number of cancer survivors, distance-based behaviour change programs addressing physical activity have the potential to make a significant public health impact.
Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (ANZCTR) identifier: ACTRN12611001061921
This study aimed to develop and evaluate the reliability and factorial validity, of social-cognitive measures related to adolescent healthy eating behaviors.
A questionnaire was developed based on constructs from Bandura’s Social Cognitive Theory and included the following scales: self-efficacy, intentions (proximal goals), situation (perceived environment), social support, behavioral strategies, outcome expectations and expectancies. The questionnaire was administered with a two week test-retest among secondary school students (n = 173, age = 13.72 ± 1.24). Confirmatory factor analysis was employed to examine model-fit for each scale using multiple indices including: chi-square index, comparative-fit index (CFI), goodness-of-fit index (GFI), and the root mean square error of approximation (RMSEA). Reliability properties were also examined (ICC and Cronbach’s alpha).
The reliability and factorial validity of each scale is supported: fit indices suggest each model to be an adequate-to-exact fit to the data; internal consistency was acceptable-to-good (α=0.65−0.79); rank order repeatability was strong (ICC = 0.81−0.89).
Conclusions and implications
Results support the reliability and factorial validity of social cognitive scales relating to healthy eating behaviors among adolescents. As such, the developed scales have utility for identifying potential social cognitive correlates of adolescent dietary behavior, mediators of dietary behavior change and validity testing of theoretical models based on Social Cognitive Theory.
Social cognitive; Measures; Adolescents; Dietary behavior
Limited evidence exists on the determinants of quality of life (QoL) specific to adults with type 1 diabetes (T1D). Further, it appears no study has compared the determinants of QoL between T1D and type 2 diabetes (T2D) groups. The objectives of this study were to examine: (1) determinants of QoL in adults with T1D; and, (2) differences in QoL determinants between T1D and T2D groups.
The Alberta Longitudinal Exercise and Diabetes Research Advancement (ALEXANDRA) study, a longitudinal study of adults with diabetes in Alberta, Canada. Adults (18 years and older) with T1D (N = 490) and T2D (N = 1,147) provided information on demographics (gender, marital status, education, and annual income), personality (activity trait), medical factors (diabetes duration, insulin use, number of comorbidities, and body mass index), lifestyle behaviors (smoking habits, physical activity, and diet), health-related quality of life (HRQL) and life satisfaction. Multiple regression models identified determinants of HRQL and life satisfaction in adults with T1D. These determinants were compared with determinants for T2D adults reported in a previous study from this population data set. Factors significantly associated with HRQL and life satisfaction in either T1D or T2D groups were further tested for interaction with diabetes type.
In adults with T1D, higher activity trait (personality) score (β = 0.28, p < 0.01), fewer comorbidities (β = -0.27, p < 0.01), lower body mass index (BMI)(β = -0.12, p < 0.01), being a non-smoker (β = -0.14, p < 0.01), and higher physical activity levels (β = 0.16, p < 0.01) were associated with higher HRQL. Having a partner (β = 0.11, p < 0.05), high annual income (β = 0.16, p < 0.01), and high activity trait (personality) score (β = 0.27, p < 0.01) were significantly associated with higher life satisfaction. There was a significant age × diabetes type interaction for HRQL. The T2D group had a stronger positive relationship between advancing age and HRQL compared to the T1D group. No interaction was significant for life satisfaction.
Health services should target medical and lifestyle factors and provide support for T1D adults to increase their QoL. Additional social support for socioeconomically disadvantaged individuals living with this disease may be warranted. Health practitioners should also be aware that age has different effects on QoL between T1D and T2D adults.
quality of life; health-related quality of life; life satisfaction; type 1 diabetes; type 2 diabetes; adults with diabetes
Purpose. To identify whether non-overweight students were different from their overweight or obese peers with respect to diet, suboptimal meal behaviours, and physical activity using a self-administered web-based survey. Methods. 4097 adolescents living in Alberta, Canada completed Web-SPAN (Web Survey of Physical Activity and Nutrition). Students were classified as overweight or obese, and differences were described in terms of nutrient intakes, physical activity, and meal behaviours. Results. Non-overweight students consumed significantly more carbohydrate and fibre, and significantly less fat and high calorie beverages, and had a higher frequency of consuming breakfast and snacks compared to overweight or obese students. Both non-overweight and overweight students were significantly more active than obese students. Conclusions. This research supports the need to target suboptimal behaviours such as high calorie beverage consumption, fat intake, breakfast skipping, and physical inactivity. School nutrition policies and mandatory physical education for all students may help to improve weight status in adolescents.
The 'Healthy Dads, Healthy Kids' program was designed to help overweight fathers lose weight and positively influence the health behaviors of their children. The aim of the current study was to evaluate the previously established program in a community setting, in a large effectiveness trial.
The Healthy Dads, Healthy Kids community trial consists of three stages: (i) Stage 1 - program refinement and resource development (ii) Stage 2 - community randomized controlled trial (iii) Stage 3 - community effectiveness trial. The program will be evaluated in five Local Government Areas in the Hunter Valley Region of NSW, Australia. For the community randomized controlled trial, 50 overweight/obese men (aged 18-65 years) from one Local Government Area with a child aged between 5-12 years of age will be recruited. Families will be randomized to either the program or a 6-month wait-list control group. Fathers and their children will be assessed at baseline, post-intervention (3-months) and 6-months. Inclusion criteria are: body mass index 25-40 kg/m2; no participation in other weight loss programs during the study; pass a health-screening questionnaire; and access to a computer with Internet facilities. In the community trial, the program will be evaluated using a non-randomized, prospective design in five Local Government Areas. The exclusion criteria is body mass index < 25 kg/m2 or lack of doctor's approval. Measures will be collected at baseline, 3-, 6- and 12-months. The program involves fathers attending seven face-to-face group sessions (three with children) over 3-months. Measures: The primary outcome is fathers' weight. Secondary outcomes for both fathers and children include: waist circumference, blood pressure, resting heart rate, physical activity, sedentary behaviors and dietary intake. Father-only measures include portion size, alcohol consumption, parenting for physical activity and nutrition and parental engagement. Process evaluation will determine the fidelity, dose (delivered and received), reach, recruitment and context of the program.
As a unique approach to reducing obesity prevalence in men and improving lifestyle behaviours in children, our findings will provide important evidence relating to the translation of Healthy Dads, Healthy Kids, which will enable it to be delivered on a larger scale.
Australia and New Zealand Clinical Trials Register (ANZCTR): ACTRN12610000608066
Computer-tailored physical activity interventions are becoming increasingly popular. Recent reviews have comprehensively synthesised published research on computer-tailored interventions delivered via interactive technology (e.g. web-based programs) but there is a paucity of synthesis for interventions delivered via traditional print-based media in the physical activity domain (i.e. tailored-print interventions). The current study provides a systematic review of the tailored-print literature, to identify key factors relating to efficacy in tailored-print physical activity interventions.
Computer-tailored print intervention studies published up until May 2010 were identified through a search of three databases: Medline, CINAHL, and Psycinfo; and by searching reference lists of relevant publications, hand searching journals and by reviewing publications lists of 11 key authors who have published in this field.
The search identified 12 interventions with evaluations reported in 26 publications. Seven out of the 12 identified studies reported positive intervention effects on physical activity behaviour, ranging from one month to 24 months post-baseline and 3 months to 18 months post-intervention. The majority of studies reporting positive intervention effects were theory-based interventions with multiple intervention contacts.
There is preliminary evidence that tailored-print interventions are a promising approach to promoting physical activity in adult populations. Future research is needed to further identify key factors relating to efficacy and to determine if this approach is cost-effective and sustainable in the long-term.
Obesity is a major cause of preventable death in Australia with prevalence increasing at an alarming rate. Of particular concern is that approximately 68% of men are overweight/obese, yet are notoriously difficult to engage in weight loss programs, despite being more susceptible than women to adverse weight-related outcomes. There is a need to develop and evaluate obesity treatment programs that target and appeal to men. The primary aim of this study is to evaluate the efficacy of two relatively low intensity weight loss programs developed specifically for men.
Methods and Design
The study design is an assessor blinded, parallel-group randomised controlled trial that recruited 159 overweight and obese men in Newcastle, Australia. Inclusion criteria included: BMI 25-40 (kg/m2); no participation in other weight loss programs during the study; pass a health-screening questionnaire and pre-exercise risk assessment; available for assessment sessions; access to a computer with e-mail and Internet facilities; and own a mobile phone. Men were recruited to the SHED-IT (Self-Help, Exercise and Diet using Internet Technology) study via the media and emails sent to male dominated workplaces. Men were stratified by BMI category (overweight, obese class I, obese class II) and randomised to one of three groups: (1) SHED-IT Resources - provision of materials (DVD, handbooks, pedometer, tape measure) with embedded behaviour change strategies to support weight loss; (2) SHED-IT Online - same materials as SHED-IT Resources plus access to and instruction on how to use the study website; (3) Wait-list Control. The intervention programs are three months long with outcome measures taken by assessors blinded to group allocation at baseline, and 3- and 6-months post baseline. Outcome measures include: weight (primary outcome), % body fat, waist circumference, blood pressure, resting heart rate, objectively measured physical activity, self-reported dietary intake, sedentary behaviour, physical activity and dietary cognitions, sleepiness, quality of life, and perceived sexual health. Generalised linear mixed models will be used to assess all outcomes for the impact of group (Resources, Online, and Control), time (treated as categorical with levels baseline, 3-months and 6-months) and the group-by-time interaction. These three terms will form the base model. 'Intention-to-treat' analysis will include all randomised participants.
Our study will compare evidence-based and theoretically driven, low cost and easily disseminated strategies specifically targeting weight loss in men. The SHED-IT community trial will provide evidence to inform development and dissemination of sustainable strategies to reduce obesity in men.
Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (ACTRN12610000699066)
Child and adolescent obesity predisposes individuals to an increased risk of morbidity and mortality from a range of lifestyle diseases. Although there is some evidence to suggest that rates of pediatric obesity have leveled off in recent years, this has not been the case among youth from low socioeconomic backgrounds. The purpose of this paper is to report the rationale, study design and baseline findings of a school-based obesity prevention program for low-active adolescent girls from disadvantaged secondary schools.
The Nutrition and Enjoyable Activity for Teen Girls (NEAT Girls) intervention will be evaluated using a group randomized controlled trial. NEAT Girls is a 12-month multi-component school-based intervention developed in reference to Social Cognitive Theory and includes enhanced school sport sessions, interactive seminars, nutrition workshops, lunch-time physical activity (PA) sessions, PA and nutrition handbooks, parent newsletters, pedometers for self-monitoring and text messaging for social support. The following variables were assessed at baseline and will be completed again at 12- and 24-months: adiposity, objectively measured PA, muscular fitness, time spent in sedentary behaviors, dietary intake, PA and nutrition social-cognitive mediators, physical self-perception and global self-esteem. Statistical analyses will follow intention-to-treat principles and hypothesized mediators of PA and nutrition behavior change will be explored.
NEAT Girls is an innovative intervention targeting low-active girls using evidence-based behavior change strategies and nutrition and PA messages and has the potential to prevent unhealthy weight gain and reduce the decline in physical activity and poor dietary habits associated with low socio-economic status. Few studies have reported the long-term effects of school-based obesity prevention programs and the current study has the potential to make an important contribution to the field.
Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry No: ACTRN12610000330044
At a population level, the method used to determine those meeting physical activity guidelines has important implications, as estimating “sufficient” physical activity might be confounded by weight status. The objective of this study was to test the difference between three methods in estimating the prevalence of “sufficient activity” among Canadian adults with type 2 diabetes in a large population sample (N = 1614) while considering the role of weight status as a potential confounder. Our results revealed that estimates of physical activity levels vary by BMI categories, depending on the methods examined. Although physical activity levels were lower in the obese, their energy expenditure estimates were not different from those who were overweight or of a healthy weight. The implications of these findings are that biased estimates of physical activity at a population level may result in inappropriate classification of adults with type 2 diabetes as “sufficiently active” and that the inclusion of body weight in estimating physical activity prevalence should be approached with caution.
Attempts to demonstrate the efficacy of interventions aimed at increasing physical activity (PA) have been mixed. Further, studies are seldom designed in a manner that facilitates the understanding of how or why a treatment is effective or ineffective and PA intervention designs should be guided by a heavier reliance upon behavioral theory. The use of a mediating variable framework offers a systematic methodological approach to testing the role of theory, and could also identify the effectiveness of specific intervention components. The primary purpose of this paper was to test the mediating role that cognitive constructs may have played in regards to the positive effect that a workplace behavioral intervention had on leisure-time PA for women. A subsidiary purpose was to examine the cross-sectional relationships of these cognitive constructs with PA behavior.
The Physical Activity Workplace Study was a randomized controlled trial which compared the effects of stage-matched and standard print materials upon self-reported leisure-time PA, within a workplace sample at 6 and 12-months. In this secondary analysis we examined the mediation effects of 14 psychosocial constructs across 3 major social-cognitive theories which were operationalized for the intervention materials and measured at baseline, 6 and 12-months. We examined change in PA and change in the psychological constructs employing a mediation strategy proposed by Baron and Kenny for: (1) the first 6-months (i.e., initial change), (2) the second 6-months (i.e., delayed change), and (3) the entire 12-months (overall change) of the study on 323 women (n = 213 control/standard materials group; n = 110 stage-matched materials group).
Of the 14 constructs and 42 tests (including initial, delayed and overall change) two positive results were identified (i.e., overall change in pros, initial change in experiential powerful intervention approaches processes), with very small effect sizes. However, these mediating results were eliminated after adjusting for the multiple statistical tests.
The intervention did not change these mediators in any substantive way, and show a similar pattern to prior research where interventions generally do not result in a change in mediation of behavior change. It is important to report mediation results in randomized controlled trials whether the findings are null or positive. Future studies may wish to focus on more detailed dose-response issues between mediators and behavior, the inclusion of moderators that could affect individual change, or different mediator constructs at higher levels of measurement specificity. Continued work on innovative and more powerful PA intervention approaches are needed.
The primary aim of this study was to compare the efficacy of three physical activity (PA) behavioural intervention strategies in a sample of adults with type 2 diabetes.
Participants (N = 287) were randomly assigned to one of three groups consisting of the following intervention strategies: (1) standard printed PA educational materials provided by the Canadian Diabetes Association [i.e., Group 1/control group)]; (2) standard printed PA educational materials as in Group 1, pedometers, a log book and printed PA information matched to individuals' PA stage of readiness provided every 3 months (i.e., Group 2); and (3) PA telephone counseling protocol matched to PA stage of readiness and tailored to personal characteristics, in addition to the materials provided in Groups 1 and 2 (i.e., Group 3). PA behaviour measured by the Godin Leisure Time Exercise Questionnaire and related social-cognitive measures were assessed at baseline, 3, 6, 9, 12 and 18-months (i.e., 6-month follow-up). Clinical (biomarkers) and health-related quality of life assessments were conducted at baseline, 12-months, and 18-months. Linear Mixed Model (LMM) analyses will be used to examine time-dependent changes from baseline across study time points for Groups 2 and 3 relative to Group 1.
ADAPT will determine whether tailored but low-cost interventions can lead to sustainable increases in PA behaviours. The results may have implications for practitioners in designing and implementing theory-based physical activity promotion programs for this population.
Clinical Trials Registration
ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT00221234
ParticipACTION was a pervasive communication campaign that promoted physical activity in the Canadian population for three decades. According to McGuire's hierarchy-of-effects model (HOEM), this campaign should influence physical activity through intermediate mediators such as beliefs and intention. Also, when such media campaigns occur, knowledge gaps often develop within the population about the messages being conveyed. The purposes of this study were to (a) determine the current awareness of ParticipACTION campaigns among Canadians; (b) confirm if awareness of the ParticipACTION initiative varied as a function of levels of education and household income; and, (c) to examine whether awareness of ParticipACTION was associated with physical activity related beliefs, intentions, and leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) as suggested by the HOEM. Specifically, we tested a model including awareness of ParticipACTION (unprompted, prompted), outcome expectations, self-efficacy, intention, and physical activity status.
A population-based survey was conducted on 4,650 Canadians over a period of 6 months from August, 2007 to February, 2008 (response rate = 49%). The survey consisted of a set of additional questions on the 2007 Physical Activity Monitor (PAM). Our module on the PAM included questions related to awareness and knowledge of ParticipACTION. Weighted logistic models were constructed to test the knowledge gap hypotheses and to examine whether awareness was associated with physical activity related beliefs (i.e., outcome expectations, self-efficacy), intention, and LTPA. All analyses included those respondents who were 20 years of age and older in 2007/2008 (N = 4424).
Approximately 8% of Canadians were still aware of ParticipACTION unprompted and 82% were aware when prompted. Both education and income were significant correlates of awareness among Canadians. The odds of people being aware of ParticipACTION were greater if they were more educated and reported higher income. Awareness of ParticipACTION was also associated with outcome expectations, self-efficacy, intention, and LTPA status.
Awareness of ParticipACTION is associated with LTPA. Knowledge gaps in awareness are associated with level of education and household income. Thus, future promotion campaigns should include specific strategies to target different segments of the population, especially people who are living in deprived conditions with lower levels of education.
ParticipACTION is a Canadian physical activity (PA) communications and social marketing organization that was relaunched in 2007 after a six-year hiatus. This study assesses the baseline awareness and capacity of Canadian organizations that promote physical activity, to adopt, implement and promote ParticipACTION's physical activity campaign. The three objectives were: (1) to determine organizational awareness of both the 'original' and 'new' ParticipACTION; (2) to report baseline levels of three organizational capacity domains (i.e., to adopt, implement and externally promote physical activity initiatives); and, (3) to explore potential differences in those domains based on organizational size, sector and primary mandate.
Organizations at local, provincial/territorial, and national levels were sent an invitation via email prior to the official launch of ParticipACTION to complete an on-line survey. The survey assessed their organization's capacity to adopt, implement and externally promote a new physical activity campaign within their organizational mandates. Descriptive statistics were employed to address the first two study objectives. A series of one-way analysis of variance were conducted to examine the third objective.
The response rate was 29.7% (268/902). The majority of responding organizations had over 40 employees and had operated for over 10 years. Education was the most common primary mandate, followed by sport and recreation. Organizations were evenly distributed between government and not-for-profits. Approximately 96% of respondents had heard of the 'original' ParticipACTION while 54.6% had heard of the 'new' ParticipACTION (Objective 1). Findings indicate good organizational capacity in Canada to promote physical activity (Objective 2) based on reported means of approximately 4.0 (on 5-point scales) for capacity to adopt, implement, and externally promote new physical activity campaigns. Capacity to adopt new physical activity campaigns differed by organizational sector and mandate, and capacity to implement differed by organizational mandate (Objective 3).
At baseline, and without specific details of the campaign, respondents believe they have good capacity to work with ParticipACTION. ParticipACTION may do well to capitalize on the existing strong organizational capacity components of leadership, infrastructure and 'will' of national organizations to facilitate the success of its future campaigns.
Evaluation of the original ParticipACTION campaign effects focused on individual awareness, recall, and understanding. Less studied has been the impact such campaigns have had on the broader organizational capacity to mobilize and advocate for physical activity. With the relaunch of ParticipACTION, the purpose of this study was to qualitatively explore baseline organizational capacity to promote physical activity messages, programs, and services within the Canadian context.
Using a purposeful sampling strategy, we conducted semi-structured telephone interviews with 49 key informants representing a range of national, provincial, and local organizations with a mandate to promote physical activity. Interview data were analysed using a thematic analytic approach.
Key informants painted a generally positive picture of current organizational capacity to promote physical activity messages, programs, and services in Canada. Will and leadership were clear strengths while infrastructure limitations remained the greatest concern. Some specific challenges included: 1) funding issues: the absence of core funding in a climate of shifting funding priorities; 2) the difficulty of working without a national physical activity policy (lack of leadership); 3) inconsistent provincial and educational sector level policies; and 4) a persistent focus on obesity rather than physical inactivity.
The data generated here can be utilized to monitor the future impact of ParticipACTION on enhancing and utilizing this organizational capacity. A range of indicators are suggested that could be used to illustrate ParticipACTION's impact on the broad field of physical activity promotion in the future.
This pilot study evaluated the feasibility (recruitment, retention, adherence and satisfaction) and preliminary efficacy of a 12-week website and email-linked counselling intervention on physical activity behaviour change in individuals with type 2 diabetes.
A total of 49 individuals with type 2 diabetes (59% female, average age 54.1 years) were randomized to the Diabetes NetPLAY intervention or control condition. The intervention condition received information grounded in the Social Cognitive Theory (SCT), personalized weekly emails, an on-line logbook and message board. Key outcomes included physical activity behaviour and related cognition changes. The control condition was provided links to the Canadian Diabetes Association's Clinical Practice Guidelines for Physical Activity and Canada's Guide to Physical Activity.
Intervention participants indicated high levels of satisfaction for this mode of delivery and study results demonstrated the feasibility of web-based mediums for the delivery of physical activity information in this population. The intervention group demonstrated a significant improvement in total vigorous and moderate minutes of physical activity (p = 0.05) compared to the control group over the 12-week study. Among the SCT variables, behavioural capacity, showed a significant increase (p < 0.001) among intervention participants.
Web-based interventions for individuals with type 2 diabetes are feasible and show promise for improving positive physical activity outcomes.
Aerobic physical activity (PA) and resistance training are paramount in the treatment and management of type 2 diabetes (T2D), but few studies have examined the determinants of both types of exercise in the same sample.
The primary purpose was to investigate the utility of the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) in explaining aerobic PA and resistance training in a population sample of T2D adults.
A total of 244 individuals were recruited through a random national sample which was created by generating a random list of household phone numbers. The list was proportionate to the actual number of household telephone numbers for each Canadian province (with the exception of Quebec). These individuals completed self-report TPB constructs of attitude, subjective norm, perceived behavioral control and intention, and a 3-month follow-up that assessed aerobic PA and resistance training.
TPB explained 10% and 8% of the variance respectively for aerobic PA and resistance training; and accounted for 39% and 45% of the variance respectively for aerobic PA and resistance training intentions.
These results may guide the development of appropriate PA interventions for aerobic PA and resistance training based on the TPB.
There is an emerging knowledge base on the effectiveness of strategies to close the knowledge-practice gap. However, less is known about how attributes of an innovation and other contextual and situational factors facilitate and impede an innovation's adoption. The Healthy Heart Kit (HHK) is a risk management and patient education resource for the prevention of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and promotion of cardiovascular health. Although previous studies have demonstrated the HHK's content validity and practical utility, no published study has examined physicians' uptake of the HHK and factors that shape its adoption.
Conceptually informed by Rogers' Diffusion of Innovation theory, and Theory of Planned Behaviour, this study had two objectives: (1) to determine if specific attributes of the HHK as well as contextual and situational factors are associated with physicians' intention and actual usage of the HHK kit; and (2), to determine if any contextual and situational factors are associated with individual or environmental barriers that prevent the uptake of the HHK among those physicians who do not plan to use the kit.
A sample of 153 physicians who responded to an invitation letter sent to all family physicians in the province of Alberta, Canada were recruited for the study. Participating physicians were sent a HHK, and two months later a study questionnaire assessed primary factors on the physicians' clinical practice, attributes of the HHK (relative advantage, compatibility, complexity, trialability, observability), confidence and control using the HHK, barriers to use, and individual attributes. All measures were used in path analysis, employing a causal model based on Rogers' Diffusion of Innovations Theory and Theory of Planned Behaviour.
115 physicians (follow up rate of 75%) completed the questionnaire. Use of the HHK was associated with intention to use the HHK, relative advantage, and years of experience. Relative advantage and the observability of the HHK benefits were also significantly associated with physicians' intention to use the HHK. Physicians working in solo medical practices reported experiencing more individual and environmental barriers to using the HHK.
The results of this study suggest that future information innovations must demonstrate an advantage over current resources and the research evidence supporting the innovation must be clearly visible. Findings also suggest that the innovation adoption process has a social element, and collegial interactions and discussions may facilitate that process. These results could be valuable for knowledge translation researchers and health promotion developers in future innovation adoption planning.
Childhood obesity has reached epidemic levels in the developed world. Recent research and commentary suggest that an ecological approach is required to address childhood obesity, given the multidimensional nature of the problem. We propose a Canadian prototype, the Child Health Ecological Surveillance System, for a regional health authority to address the growing obesity epidemic. This prototype could potentially be used in other jurisdictions to address other child health issues. We present 8 guiding principles for the development and implementation of a regional framework for action.
Walking is the primary focus of population-based physical activity initiatives but a theoretical understanding of this behaviour is still elusive. The purpose of this study was to integrate personality, the perceived environment, and planning into a theory of planned behaviour (TPB) framework to predict leisure-time walking.
Participants were a random sample (N = 358) of Canadian adults who completed measures of the TPB, planning, perceived neighbourhood environment, and personality at Time 1 and self-reported walking behaviour two months later.
Analyses using structural equation modelling provided evidence that leisure-time walking is largely predicted by intention (standardized effect = .42) with an additional independent contribution from proximity to neighbourhood retail shops (standardized effect = .18). Intention, in turn, was predicted by attitudes toward walking and perceived behavioural control. Effects of perceived neighbourhood aesthetics and walking infrastructure on walking were mediated through attitudes and intention. Moderated regression analysis showed that the intention-walking relationship was moderated by conscientiousness and proximity to neighbourhood recreation facilities but not planning.
Overall, walking behaviour is theoretically complex but may best be addressed at a population level by facilitating strong intentions in a receptive environment even though individual differences may persist.