Fit for Life Boy Scout badge: Outcome evaluation of a troop and Internet intervention

Department of Exercise and Health Sciences, Centre for Sport, Exercise and Health, University of Bristol, Tyndall Avenue, Bristol BS8 1TP, UK.
Preventive Medicine (Impact Factor: 3.09). 04/2006; 42(3):181-7. DOI: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2005.12.010
Source: PubMed


This study reports the results of a 9-week intervention on the physical activity levels of adolescent males.
Participants were 473 10- to 14-year-old Houston Boy Scouts (42 troops) with troops randomly assigned to intervention or control conditions. Data were collected in spring (16 troops) and fall (26 troop) waves during 2003. Intervention participants received a 9-week troop and Internet program to increase physical activity skills, self-efficacy and goal-setting. Physical activity was assessed at baseline, end of the intervention (Post#1) and post-6 months (Post#2) by accelerometer. Minutes of sedentary, light and moderate to vigorous physical activity were calculated. Repeated measure analyses were performed to test differences in physical activity over time between groups with participants nested in troops.
A three-way interaction (group * time * wave) that approached significance (P = 0.051) indicated a 12-min reduction in sedentary behavior among spring intervention participants. A significant three-way interaction (P = 0.011) (group * time * wave) indicated a 12-min increase in light intensity activity among the spring intervention group.
Participation in the Fit for Life badge program resulted in a trend towards a small decrease in sedentary behavior and increased light intensity physical activity among spring participants only. There was no effect on moderate to vigorous physical activity.

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    • "A power calculation was conducted for a three-arm CRCT based on intra-class correlations and changes in total accelerometer counts obtained from previous research [54]. For an estimated cluster size of 30 participants per centre (school), a total number of 5 clusters per condition would be necessary to provide adequate power (80%, p < .05) providing a total sample size estimate of 450 participants. "
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    ABSTRACT: Physical inactivity and a poor diet predict lifestyle diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and certain types of cancer. Marked declines in physical activity occur during late adolescence, coinciding with the point at which many young people leave school and enter the workforce and begin to take greater control over their lifestyle behaviours. The work outlined within this paper sought to test a theoretically-informed intervention aimed at supporting increased engagement in physical activity and healthy eating habits in young people at the point of transition from school to work or work-based learning. As actively engaging young people in initiatives based on health messages is challenging, we also tested the efficacy of financial incentives in promoting initial engagement with the programme.Methods/design: A three-arm cluster-randomised design was used. Participants were school pupils from Year 11 and 13 (i.e., in their final year of study), aged 16-18 years. To reduce contamination effects, the unit of randomisation was school. Participants were randomly allocated to receive (i) a 12-week behavioural support intervention consisting of six appointments, (ii) a behavioural support intervention plus incentives (totalling [pound sign]40), or (iii) an information-only control group. Behavioural support was provided by fitness advisors at local leisure centres following an initial consultation with a dietician. Sessions focused on promoting habit formation through setting implementation intentions as part of an incremental goal setting process. Consistent with self-determination theory, all advisors were trained to provide guidance in an autonomy-supportive manner so that they were equipped to create a social context supportive of autonomous forms of participant motivation. The primary outcome was objectively assessed physical activity (via GT1M accelerometers). Secondary outcome measures were diet, motivation and habit strength. Data were collected at baseline, post-intervention (12 weeks) and 12 months. Findings of this trial will provide valuable insight into the feasibility of promoting autonomous engagement in healthy physical activity and dietary habits among school leavers. The research also provides much needed data and detailed information related to the use of incentives for the initial promotion of young peoples' behaviour change during this important transition.Trial registration: The trial is registered as Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN55839517.
    BMC Public Health 03/2014; 14(1):221. DOI:10.1186/1471-2458-14-221 · 2.26 Impact Factor
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    • "With regards to number of days, four or five days of monitoring have been recommended as an adequate number of monitoring days [17]; however, some studies have used a single day as a minimum criterion e.g. [18-20], and others have used up to ten days, e.g. [21]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Accelerometry is increasingly being recognized as an accurate and reliable method to assess free-living physical activity (PA) in children and adolescents. However, accelerometer data reduction criteria remain inconsistent, and the consequences of excluding participants in for example intervention studies are not well described. In this study, we investigated how different data reduction criteria changed the composition of the adolescent population retained in accelerometer data analysis. Accelerometer data (Actigraph GT3X), anthropometric measures and survey data were obtained from 1348 adolescents aged 11-14 years enrolled in the Danish SPACE for physical activity study. Accelerometer data were analysed using different settings for each of the three key data reduction criteria: (1) number of valid days; (2) daily wear time; and (3) non-wear time. The effects of the selected setting on sample retention and PA counts were investigated and compared. Ordinal logistic regression and multilevel mixed-effect linear regression models were used to analyse the impact of differing non-wear time definitions in different subgroups defined by body mass index, age, sex, and self-reported PA and sedentary levels. Increasing the minimum requirements for daily wear time and the number of valid days and applying shorter non-wear definitions, resulted in fewer adolescents retained in the dataset. Moreover, the different settings for non-wear time significantly influenced which participants would be retained in the accelerometer data analyses. Adolescents with a higher BMI (OR:0.93, CI:0.87-0.98, p=0.015) and older adolescents (OR:0.68, CI:0.49-0.95, p=0.025) were more likely to be excluded from analysis using 10 minutes of non-wear compared to longer non-wear time periods. Overweight and older adolescents accumulated more daily non-wear time if the non-wear time setting was short, and the relative difference between groups changed depending on the non-wear setting. Overweight and older adolescents did also accumulate more sedentary time, but this was not significant correlated to the non-wear setting used. Even small differences in accelerometer data reduction criteria can have substantial impact on sample size and PA and sedentary outcomes. This study highlighted the risk of introducing bias with more overweight and older adolescents excluded from the analysis when using short non-wear time definitions.
    International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity 12/2013; 10(1):140. DOI:10.1186/1479-5868-10-140 · 4.11 Impact Factor
    • "Reviews of the literature have identified that online interventions for adults have shown some success [7-12]. Youth online interventions have also been somewhat successful at improving diet [13-16] and physical activity [13,16,17] behaviors, and promoting weight loss [18]. Critical components for success in these endeavors appears to be the active participation of youth in the development of such programs [6,19] and the use of theory and behavior change techniques to guide program development [20]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Teens do not meet guidelines for healthy eating and physical activity. The Internet may be an effective method for delivering programs that help them adopt healthy behaviors. To collect information to design content and structure for a teen-friendly website promoting healthy eating and physical activity behaviors. Qualitative research, encompassing both focus group and interview techniques, were used to design the website. Participants were 12-17 year olds in Houston, Texas, and West Lafayette, Indiana. A total of 133 participants took part in 26 focus groups while 15 participated in one-on-one interviews to provide guidance for the development of teen-friendly content and structure for an online behavior change program promoting healthy eating and physical activity to 12-17 year olds. The youth made suggestions to overcome common barriers to healthy eating and physical activity. Their feedback was used to develop "Teen Choice: Food & Fitness," a 12-week online behavior change program, populated by 4 cartoon character role models. It is critical that members of the target audience be included in formative research to develop behavior change programs that are relevant, appealing, and address their needs and interests.
    Journal of Medical Internet Research 04/2012; 14(2):e59. DOI:10.2196/jmir.1889 · 3.43 Impact Factor
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