• Attempting to create behaviour change using an ethnographic approach: A family-based study

      Edwards, Jacob (University of Chester, 2014-09)
      The following study is an ethnographic approach to changing behaviour towards physical activity with a recently retired family member by using a physical activity intervention. The overall aim of this study was to attempt to create some sort of behaviour change using the Prochaska & DiClemente (1983) Transtheoretical Model (TTM) as a framework. There is a wide range of previous research on the subject of interventions and how best to apply them and the differing environments (Stubbs & Lavin, 2002; Michie & Abraham, 2004; Ransdell, Taylor, Oakland, Schmidt, Moyer-Mileur & Schultz, 2003). There is a long process involved before commencing with an intervention, involving interviews, questionnaires, planning and evaluating. Additionally, the study assessed my Father’s psychological measures, as opposed to focusing on physiological measures. The exercise undertaken each week was calculated using the Godin Leisure-Time Exercise Questionnaire (GLTEQ) calculation to assess whether there was an increase/decrease from baseline week to post-intervention. Despite the focus of the study analysing any change in behaviour, the use of the GLTEQ calculation enables for a greater understanding of how much exercise was being completed each week, in comparison to the baseline, my Father’s weight was also recorded, prior to the intervention commencing, post-intervention and after the completion of the whole study. The results found that there was a short term increase in physical activity from the baseline week compared to the weeks of independent activity. Furthermore, my father appeared to have extra positive feelings towards exercise before an activity after the intervention than beforehand.
    • How relevant and effective is the information given in a phase III cardiac rehabilitation programme?

      Fallows, Stephen; Williams, Margaret R. (University of Chester, 2008-09)
      The purpose of this evaluation study was to consider the views of people attending a phase III cardiac rehabilitation programme in respect of the relevance of the information given in the educational component of the programme and to examine if that information can positively influence behaviour change. A review of the literature confirms that there is strong evidence attesting to the benefits of cardiac rehabilitation, despite this, important questions remain to be answered as to the value of the non-exercise element of the programme. Exploring patients’ views and preferences is considered a valid method of assessing the value of health care. A questionnaire incorporating both quantitative and qualitative components was used to collect data from a selection of participants attending the programme (n=54, mostly middle aged males). Descriptive statistics including frequencies and percentages were formulated to summarize and present the quantitative data, the responses to the qualitative data were thematically collated and analysed manually. Overall, the participants agreed the information they received in all of the educational talks was relevant to their needs. The findings also indicate that the participants were encouraged to make positive lifestyle changes, confirming the effectiveness of the information given as a means of instigating behavioural change.
    • Promoting physical activity in general practice: Maltese GPs’ beliefs, attitudes and practices

      Fallows, Stephen; Calleja, Johanna (University of Chester, 2011-09)
      The aim of this research project was to investigate promotion of physical activity (PA) in general practice in Malta, by analysing Maltese general practitioners’ (GPs’) beliefs, attitudes and self-reported practices. All Maltese GPs were invited to participate in this postal survey, whereby data was collected using a validated questionnaire about PA in general practice. The main outcome measures included knowledge, role perception, confidence, barriers and frequency of PA promotion, feasibility of different PA promotion strategies and GPs’ PA levels. The response rate was 53% (156 replies out of 296). Although role perception was high, PA promotion was generally low (52% promoted PA to < 30% of patients), with GPs more likely to promote PA if they perceived it as relevant to the patient’s condition. Only 19% of GPs knew the national PA recommendations, with those who did being somewhat more likely to promote PA to > 30 patients/month than those who did not (59% vs. 41%, p = 0.082). GPs were more confident in giving general PA advice than suggesting specific PA programmes, and a relationship was found between confidence and frequency of promoting PA (p = 0.005, r = 0.226). There was also a relationship between GPs’ PA levels and frequency of promoting PA (p = 0.038, r = 0.168). The most common barrier was lack of time, while brief counselling during consultations was considered most feasible. Initiatives are required to increase knowledge about PA recommendations and PA promotion among Maltese GPs. Due to numerous advantages and GPs’ hypothetical support, a framework in which GPs recommend increased PA and offer referrals to a PA counsellor could be ideal. However, research is required about how to implement such a framework. PA promotion by GPs could have a significant public health impact, particularly since physical inactivity and obesity levels are very high in Malta.