Aim: To evaluate the effect of exercise consultation on promotion of physical activity in people with Type 2 diabetes.
Methods: Twenty-six sedentary people with Type 2 diabetes were randomly assigned to receive an exercise consultation and standard exercise information (experimental) or standard exercise information alone (control). Exercise consultation is a one-to-one discussion, based on the transtheoretical model, designed to educate, strengthen motivation and develop realistic strategies to promote physical activity. Changes from baseline at five weeks were assessed in (a) stage of exercise behaviour (b) physical activity levels (7-day recall questionnaire and an accelerometer) (c) quality of life (SF-36 Health Survey and 22-Item Well-Being Questionnaire).
Results: 82% (9/11) of participants receiving a consultation increased their stage of exercise behaviour compared to 33% (4/12) of controls (chi2 = 5.4, P = 0.02). Physical activity counts/week increased by 4% (1636 067/1696 191) in the experimental group and decreased by 9% (1560 960/1725 510) in controls. A significant difference was recorded for the change in activity counts per week from baseline to follow-up between the experimental and control group (98% CI = 60 673-710 827). The number of participants taking part in sport or leisure activity increased by 55% (6/11) in the experimental group and decreased by 6% (1/12) in controls. Positive changes were evident in the experimental group, compared to controls, in both quality of life questionnaires.
Conclusion: Exercise consultation is more effective in stimulating exercise behaviour change in the short term than a standard exercise leaflet.