The behaviour change techniques used by Australian physiotherapists to promote non-treatment physical activity to patients with musculoskeletal conditions Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • OBJECTIVES:To determine: (i) the behaviour change techniques used by a sample of Australian physiotherapists to promote non-treatment physical activity; and (ii) whether those behaviour change techniques are different to the techniques used to encourage adherence to rehabilitation exercises. DESIGN:Cross-sectional survey. METHOD:An online self-report survey was advertised to private practice and outpatient physiotherapists treating patients with musculoskeletal conditions. The use of 50 behaviour change techniques were measured using five-point Likert-type scale questions. RESULTS:Four-hundred and eighty-six physiotherapists responded to the survey, with 216 surveys fully completed. Most respondents (85.1%) promoted non-treatment physical activity often or all of the time. Respondents frequently used 29 behaviour change techniques to promote non-treatment physical activity or encourage adherence to rehabilitation exercises. A similar number of behaviour change techniques was frequently used to encourage adherence to rehabilitation exercises (n=28) and promote non-treatment physical activity (n=26). Half of the behaviour change techniques included in the survey were frequently used for both promoting non-treatment physical activity and encouraging adherence to rehabilitation exercises (n=25). Graded tasks was the most, and punishment was the least, frequently reported technique used to promote non-treatment physical activity and encourage adherence to rehabilitation exercises. CONCLUSIONS:Respondents reported using similar behaviour change techniques to promote non-treatment physical activity and encourage adherence to rehabilitation exercises. The variability in behaviour change technique use suggests the behaviour the physiotherapist is promoting influences their behaviour change technique choice. Including the frequently-used behaviour change techniques in non-treatment physical activity promotion interventions might improve their efficacy.

publication date

  • 2019