UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Tailored Physical Activity Behaviour Change Interventions : Challenges and Opportunities Ma, Jasmin; Floegel, Theresa A.; Li, Linda C.; Leese, Jenny; De Vera, Mary; Beauchamp, Mark R. (Mark Robert), 1972-; Taunton, Jack E.; Liu-Ambrose, Teresa; Allen, Kelli D.


Background: A physically active lifestyle provides innumerable benefits, yet few individuals are physically active enough to reap those benefits. Tailored physical activity interventions may address low rates of physical activity by offering individualized strategies that consider a person’s characteristics, needs, preferences, and/or context, rather than the traditional one-size-fits-all approach. However, the tailoring methodology is in its nascency, and an understanding of how best to develop such interventions is needed. Purpose: In this commentary, we identify future directions to enhance the impact of tailored interventions designed to increase physical activity participation. Methods: An international collaborative was established to review the literature and discuss an agenda for future research. Results: Two overarching research opportunities are suggested for improving the development of tailored, behavioural physical activity interventions: 1) optimize the engagement of diverse knowledge users in intervention co-design and 2) examine ethical considerations that may impact the use of technology to support tailored physical activity delivery. Specifically, there is a need for better reporting and evaluation of knowledge user involvement alongside targeting diversity in the inclusion of knowledge users. Furthermore, while technology boasts many opportunities to increase the scale and precision of interventions, examinations of how it impacts recipients’ experiences of and participation in tailored interventions are needed to ensure the positives of the technology outweigh the negatives. Conclusion: A better understanding of these research areas will help ensure the diverse needs of individuals are met, technology is appropriately used to support tailoring, and ultimately improve the effectiveness of tailored physical activity interventions.

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