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UBC Theses and Dissertations

The relationship between selected program component combinations and adherence in a twelve week employee fitness pilot program MacLeod, Michael Dee

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to determine which of several selected combinations of components within an employee fitness program would positively effect female hospital workers' rate of adherence to a regular physical activity routine. Additional problems included: (i) studying the effects of the twelve week employee fitness pilot program on the measured dependent variables performed on the employee sample and (ii) determining a relationship between adherence rates-(high or low) and the amount of change in the hypothesized improvements. Fifty physically inactive female employees from Peace Arch District Hospital in White Rock, B.C. volunteered to take part in the employee fitness program. The subjects were randomly assigned to one of three groups. Each group participated in a lifestyle and fitness assessment but was otherwise distinguished as follows: Group 1 was assigned to the exercise facility, exercise classes and the education and motivation program; Group 2 was assigned to the exercise facility and exercise classes, and Group 3 was assigned to the education and motivation program. An attempt was made to determine if the maximal stimulus program available to Group 1 resulted in (i) a superior rate of adherence to a regular exercise routine and (ii) a greater improvement in the dependent variables, compared with Groups 2 and 3. The Employee Fitness Program was conducted over a twelve week period and the subjects were pre and post tested for physical activity levels, physical fitness (as indicated by predicted oxygen uptake, flexibility and percent body fat), lifestyle risk factors and self concept which were then analyzed by separate ANOVA's. Instruments used were: the Action B.C. Nutrition Evaluation to determine physical activity levels, the Dynavit computerized bicycle ergometer, the Action B.C. norms for flexibility, the Kuntzelman method for determining percent body fat, the Health Hazard Appraisal and the Tennessee Self Concept Scale. Adherence data was collected on self reported progress charts and analyzed by the use of the Chi-square test of independence. The results indicated a significant improvement in the physical activity and physical fitness of the employee sample. There were no significant improvements in the lifestyle risk factors and self concept over the course of the study. As well, no significant differences were noted among the three groups in adherence and in the improvements in the dependent variables. Only three variables - predicted oxygen uptake, back extension and percent body fat - were considered appropriate for statistical analyses regarding high vs. low adherence due to the unequal number of subjects in the two groups and the large differences among cell variances. In these three variables, the high adherence participants showed a significant improvement over the low adherence participants. This trend was also noted in the other five variables inappropriate for statistical analyses.

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