A Longitudinal Examination of the Social-Ecological Correlates of Exercise in Men and Women Following Cardiac Rehabilitation
Reid, Robert D.
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Cardiac patients who engage in ≥150 min of moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity (MVPA)/week have lower mortality, yet MVPA declines even following cardiac rehabilitation (CR), and is lower in women. A randomized trial of nine socioecological theory-based exercise facilitation contacts over 50 weeks versus usual care (1:1 parallel arms) was undertaken (NCT01658683). The tertiary objective, as presented in this paper, was to test whether the intervention impacted socioecological elements, and in turn their association with MVPA. The 449 participants wore an accelerometer and completed questionnaires post-CR, and 26, 52 and 78 weeks later. At 52 weeks, exercise task self-efficacy was significantly greater in the intervention arm (p = 0.01), but no other differences were observed except more encouragement from other cardiac patients at 26 weeks (favoring controls). Among women adherent to the intervention, the group in whom the intervention was proven effective, physical activity (PA) intentions at 26 weeks were significantly greater in the intervention arm (p = 0.04), with no other differences. There were some differences in socioecological elements associated with MVPA by arm. There were also some differences by sex, with MVPA more often associated with exercise benefits/barriers in men, versus with working and the physical environment in women.
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