JoAnn Michele Gleeson-Kreig, PhD
Daily activity records: Effects on physical activity self-efficacy and behavior in people with type 2 diabetes mellitus
Background: Increasing the level of physical activity in sedentary individuals with type 2 diabetes has the potential to reduce complications and to raise wellness. Cost-effective interventions are needed that positively impact activity, yet are simple enough to be utilized in clinical practice.
Objective: This study tested the effect of keeping daily activity records on physical activity levels. Study variables included physical activity, self-efficacy, age, gender, education, socioeconomic status, and social support.
Methods: This intervention study used a two-group, pretest-posttest design. Participants with type 2 diabetes aged 40 to 65 were randomly assigned to either the intervention or control group. Individuals in the intervention group kept daily activity records for six weeks, mailed to the researcher every two weeks. Individuals in the control group did not keep records. Both groups were interviewed at the beginning of the study and seven weeks later. Instrumentation pre and post included the habitual physical activity index, the self-efficacy for exercise scale, chronic illness resources survey and a demographic data sheet. Participants in the intervention group also completed the perceived feasibility checklist.
Data analysis: Data analysis was completed with SPSS. T-tests and Chi-square were used to compare for group differences. Pearson’s r was used to look for relationships between study variables. Multivariate analysis of covariance was used to examine the relationships between the treatment and the dependent variables of physical activity and self-efficacy at posttest, while holding the effect of pretest physical activity, self-efficacy and weight constant. Descriptive statistics described perception of feasibility and acceptability of the intervention.
Results: The intervention resulted in enhanced self-efficacy. Physical activity improved in both the intervention and control groups. Activity recording was judged to be acceptable and feasible.
Conclusions: Daily activity recording can be used as part of a program to increase physical activity self-efficacy levels. Focused interactions between health care providers and patients may be enough to motivate people to higher levels of physical activity. The relationship between self-efficacy and behavior is complex and should be the subject of further research.