BACKGROUND: For people with disabilities, a physically active lifestyle can reduce the risk of secondary health problems and improve overall functioning.
OBJECTIVES: To determine the effects of the sport stimulation programme "rehabilitation and sports" (R&S) and R&S combined with the daily physical activity promotion programme "active after rehabilitation" (AaR) on sport participation and daily physical activity behaviour nine weeks after inpatient or outpatient rehabilitation.
METHODS: Subjects in four intervention rehabilitation centres were randomised to a group receiving R&S only (n = 315) or a group receiving R&S and AaR (n = 284). Subjects in six control rehabilitation centres (n = 603) received the usual care. Most common diagnoses were stroke, neurological disorders, and back disorders. Two sport and two daily physical activity outcomes were assessed with questionnaires seven weeks before and nine weeks after the end of rehabilitation. Data were analysed by intention to treat and on treatment multilevel analyses, comparing both intervention groups with the control group.
RESULTS: The R&S group showed no significant change. Intention to treat analyses of the R&S+AaR group showed significant improvements in one sport (p = 0.02) and one physical activity outcome (p = 0.03). On treatment analyses in the R&S+AaR group showed significant improvements in both sport outcomes (p<0.01 and p = 0.02) and one physical activity outcome (p<0.01).
CONCLUSIONS: Only the combination of R&S and AaR had increased sports participation and daily physical activity behaviour nine weeks after the end of inpatient or outpatient rehabilitation.