The positive effect on determinants of physical activity of a tailored, general practice-based physical activity intervention

E M F Van Sluijs, M N M Van Poppel, J W R Twisk, J Brug, W Van Mechelen

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PACE (Physician-based Assessment and Counseling for Exercise) is an individualized theory-based minimal intervention strategy aimed at the enhancement of regular physical activity. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a PACE intervention applied by general practitioners (GPs) on potential determinants of physical activity. A randomized controlled trial was conducted in 29 general practices with the following inclusion criteria for patients: aged between 18 and 70 years, diagnosed with hypertension, hypercholesterolemia and/or non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, and not in maintenance stage for regular physical activity. The intervention consisted of two visits with the GP and two telephone booster calls by a physical activity counselor. Determinants of physical activity were assessed with questionnaires at baseline, and at 8-week (short), 6-month (medium) and 1-year (long) follow-up. A significant positive effect was observed on self-efficacy, and on the use of cognitive and behavioral processes of change, at both short- and medium-term follow-up. The intervention respondents also perceived fewer barriers for regular physical activity at short-term and used behavioral processes of change more at long-term follow-up. No intervention effect was observed for perceived benefits of physical activity. In conclusion, this GP-based PACE intervention resulted in positive changes in potential determinants of physical activity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)345-56
Number of pages12
JournalHealth Education Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2005

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