The effect of a designed health education intervention on physical activity knowledge and participation of adults with intellectual disabilities

Bodde AE, Seo DC, Frey GC, Van Puymbroeck M, Lohrmann DK.
Am J Health Promot. 2012 May-Jun;26(5):313-6. doi: 10.4278/ajhp.100408-ARB-112.

Department of Applied Health Science, Indiana University Bloomington, Bloomington, Indiana 47405, USA.

PURPOSE:  The purpose of this study was to assess novel methods of health education and promotion to increase physical activity among adults with intellectual disabilities.

DESIGN:   A pre-post delayed treatment design was employed to assess the effect of the intervention.

SETTING:   The intervention was administered at two agencies that serve adults with intellectual disabilities.

SUBJECTS:   Forty-two adults ranging in age from 19 to 62 with mild to moderate intellectual disability participated in the study. Participants were equally divided by gender.

INTERVENTION:   An eight-session intervention employed a combination of video instruction, pictorial memory tools, and interactive class activities as educational methods.

MEASURES:   Physical activity knowledge was evaluated using Illingworth, Moore, and McGillivray’s Nutrition Activity Knowledge Scale (NAKS) and the Physical Activity Recommendations Assessment (PARA). Average daily minutes of physical activity were measured using dual-axis accelerometers.

ANALYSIS:   Paired and independent samples t-tests were used to assess the knowledge scales. Wilcoxon signed-rank tests and Mann-Whitney U-tests were used to assess physical activity participation.

RESULTS:   Overall, there were mean improvements in scores for both the NAKS (p < .05) and the PARA (p < .001) following the intervention. Physical activity also improved, but not significantly.

CONCLUSION:   The education and training methods used in this curriculum are promising for future health education programs in this population. Additional interventions may be necessary to improve physical activity participation