Prescribed exercise: a prospective study of health-related quality of life and physical fitness among participants in an officially sponsored municipal physical training program

J Phys Act Health. 2013 Sep;10(7):1016-23. doi: 10.1123/jpah.10.7.1016. Epub 2012 Nov 5.


Background: Participants who completed a 3-month prescribed individualized exercise program in groups were followed-up prospectively. The aims were to describe the characteristics of the participants, their health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and physical fitness at baseline, at completion and at 12-month follow-up, and to identify predictors of HRQoL and physical fitness at completion and at 12-month follow-up.

Methods: A 1-group follow-up design was used. Data were collected from records of 163 attendees at a municipality-sponsored health center in Norway. HRQoL was measured by self-report using the COOP/WONCA questionnaire. Physical fitness was estimated from the results of a 2-km walk test.

Results: Of the 163 participants referred to the clinic, 130 (79.8%) were women and 33 were (20.2%) men. Participants who completed were older than those who dropped out. The participants showed clinical improvement in physical fitness and all health-related quality life domains (d > 0.53) at the completion of the program and in physical functioning, mental health, performance of daily activities, overall health, and perceived improved health after 12 months (d > 0.36).

Conclusions: Participation in group-based prescribed exercise program for 3 months may improve physical fitness and HRQoL significantly in short and long terms.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Exercise Therapy / methods*
  • Exercise Therapy / psychology
  • Exercise*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Health Behavior
  • Health Promotion / organization & administration
  • Health Status*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Health
  • Middle Aged
  • Norway
  • Physical Fitness / psychology*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Quality of Life*
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Urban Population
  • Walking / psychology