Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Lack of effectiveness of YouRAction, an Intervention to Promote Adolescent Physical Activity Using Personal and Environmental Feedback

YouRAction (targeting individual level determinants) and YouRAction+e (targeting in addition perceived environmental determinants) are two versions of a computer-tailored web-based interventions aiming to promote physical activity among adolescents. In a study just published in PLOS ONE with Rick Prins as first author, the one and six months effects of these computer-tailored interventions on compliance with the guideline to engage in at least one hour of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) per day are examined. Both tailored interventions were compared to web-based generich health education regarding physical activity.
Unfortunatley, there were no statistically significant intervention effects on compliance with the MVPA guideline, nor on overweight or waist circumference. Furthermore, the youngsters who were offered the YouRAction interventins were significantly less likely to have accessed the intervention on line compared to the generic health education.
This study could thus not demonstrate that the YouRAction and YouRAction+e interventions were effective and insufficient use and exposure to the intervention content may be an explanation for the lack of effects. These results differ from the larger evidence-base regarding computer-tailored health education. recent reviews of the literature suggest that computer-tailored health education is in general more effective than generic information.