Last updated on February 2018

Enhancing Quality of Life Through Exercise: A Tele-Rehabilitation Approach

Brief description of study

Pilot randomized controlled trial evaluating a Self-Determination Theory (SDT) video-based tele-rehabilitation physical activity intervention aimed to enhance basic psychological needs, motivation, physical activity (PA), and quality of life- related outcomes of adults with spinal cord injury (SCI). It is anticipated that the individuals who receive the physical activity intervention (intervention group) will have moderate increases in their basic psychological needs, autonomous motivation, life satisfaction, and physical activity participation, and a moderate decrease in controlled motivation and depressive symptoms compared to the individuals who did not receive the intervention (control group).

Detailed Study Description

Adults with spinal cord injury (SCI) report lower levels of quality of life (e.g., low life satisfaction; high depression) than the general population and have low rates of community participation. One health behavior that can improve these psychosocial outcomes is physical activity (PA). Unfortunately, PA rates are very low among adults with SCI. Novel interventions to increase PA are needed. One approach that has gained traction is video-based tele-rehabilitation, which has the benefit of reducing costs, increasing accessibility to services and delivering and adapting the intervention to the person's home environment.

Experts have strongly recommended that PA interventions be based in psychological theory to enhance their effectiveness. The intervention will be grounded in a strong psychological/motivational theory called self-determination theory (SDT). According to SDT, humans strive for growth and well-being by aiming to satisfy their three basic psychological needs of autonomy (sense of volition), competence (sense of capability) and relatedness (sense of connectedness). The investigators intervention will therefore be designed to foster these psychological needs in order to increase intrinsic/autonomous motivation for PA, promote higher PA levels and improve quality of life and participation.

To date, no study has either conducted a video-based tele-rehabilitation intervention to promote PA or has tested SDT among adults with SCI; thus providing the need for a pilot intervention. The purpose of this study is to pilot test an innovative, theory-informed, video-based tele-rehabilitation intervention aimed to enhance SDT-variables, PA and quality of life-related variables among adults with SCI. Effect sizes derived from this pilot intervention will be used to inform the sample size calculation of a subsequent larger randomized controlled trial. Given previous video-based PA tele-rehabilitation interventions do not exist, the hypotheses are derived from PA and general telephone-based counselling studies. Specifically, it is hypothesized that the video-based intervention will have moderate effects on SDT variables, PA, participation, life satisfaction and depression.

Clinical Study Identifier: NCT02833935

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