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Iina Antikainen and Rebecca Ellis

Although physical activity interventions have been shown to effectively modify behavior, little research has examined the potential of these interventions for adoption in real-world settings. The purpose of this literature review was to evaluate the external validity of 57 theory-based physical activity interventions using the RE-AIM framework. The physical activity interventions included were more likely to report on issues of internal, rather than external validity and on individual, rather than organizational components of the RE-AIM framework, making the translation of many interventions into practice difficult. Furthermore, most studies included motivated, healthy participants, thus reducing the generalizability of the interventions to real-world settings that provide services to more diverse populations. To determine if a given intervention is feasible and effective in translational research, more information should be reported about the factors that affect external validity.

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David A. Ferrer and Rebecca Ellis

Background:

The use of social networking sites to deliver behavioral interventions is becoming more prevalent. The purpose of this review was to systematically evaluate the published research to determine the effectiveness of Facebook-delivered interventions for promoting physical activity behavior change.

Methods:

A search of interventions delivered via Facebook (as the primary delivery method or part of a multifaceted intervention) in which physical activity was the primary or secondary outcome resulted in 8 studies for review.

Results:

Overall, 87.5% of the Facebook interventions reported some type of significant physical activity behavior change (ie, interactions, main effects for time, differences between conditions); however, only 2 of these interventions found this change to be significantly better for the treatment group than the control group.

Conclusion:

Future researchers are encouraged to test the effectiveness of Facebook-delivered physical activity interventions with additional control groups that receive no aspects of the intervention within experimental study designs, more diverse samples, theory-based content with assessment of mediators of behavior change, direct observations of physical activity, and long-term follow-ups. Although based on a small sample of studies, Facebook appears to be a promising delivery method for physical activity interventions.

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Maria Kosma, Rebecca Ellis Gardner, Bradley J. Cardinal, Jeremy J. Bauer and Jeffrey A. McCubbin

A high proportion of individuals with disabilities remain physically inactive. Therefore, this study (web-based survey) investigated the relationships between the Transtheoretical Model (TTM) and physical activity among 224 adults with physical disabilities (M age = 45.4 years, SD = 10.78, females = 71%). Additionally, the most important TTM predictors of the stages of change and physical activity were examined. Standardized self-report scales of the TTM constructs and physical activity were completed. The study findings supported the theorized relationships between the TTM constructs and physical activity. The behavioral and cognitive processes of change distinguished the stages of change. These two constructs and self-efficacy mostly predicted physical activity (R 2 total = .18). The assessment methodology of the TTM constructs needs to be revisited.

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Maria Kosma, Rebecca Ellis, Bradley J. Cardinal, Jeremy J. Bauer and Jeffrey A. McCubbin

The study’s purpose was to identify the mediating role of intention and the stages of change (SOC) in physical activity (PA) over a 6-month period using two models (Theory of Planned Behavior [TPB] and TPB/SOC). Participants were 143 adults with physical disabilities (70.68% response rate; M age = 46.03). The TPB constructs, SOC (time 1), and PA (time 2) were assessed using standardized self-report questionnaires. Based on path analyses, attitude had the highest effect on intention and SOC followed by perceived behavioral control within both well-fit models. The variance in PA explained by the first (TPB) and second (TPB/SOC) models was 16% and 28% respectively. In the just identified model of TPB/SOC, the direct effect of SOC on physical activity remained strong (γsoc.pa = .45) and SOC approached full mediation through attitude. Health promotion interventions need to include both intention and behavior elements (SOC) reinforcing increased PA value and barrier elimination.