It's Never Too Late to be Active - embedding behavioural science into a physical activity campaign for older adults
PHE ePoster Library. Simey P. Sep 12, 2018; 221432; 33
Piers Simey
Piers Simey
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Abstract Introduction
There is clear evidence that an active lifestyle improves health, wellbeing, and promotes independence.  In Hertfordshire 42% of 65+ year olds are inactive and 57.8% do not meetnational recommendations. As part of its Year of Physical Activity Hertfordshire County Council developeda 12-weekbehaviour change campaign aimedto inspire inactive and low activity older adults to become more active.

A behavioural science approach was taken to the development of It's Never Too Late to be Active', based on the COM-B model (Michie, 2011). The campaign launched in April 2018 across social media and in local daily mile schools with children inviting older adults to join them for their daily mile.

Key behavioural science areas included:
•    Analysis of focus groups transcripts identifying barriers to becoming more active
•    Literature review identifying key behaviour change techniques including, action planning, graded tasks, prompts and cues, and behavioural practice (Howlett, 2018)
•    Activity planner to support moving from intention to action (Gollwitzer,1997)
•    Regular messaging targeted at key motivation(health, social, improve mobility, enjoy activity)
•    Personalised support from a team trained in core motivational interviewing skills
•    Incentives – free activity passesthrough local leisure providers.  Prize draw for completing follow up survey at 12 weeks for individuals and schools.

The campaign launched on 23rd April, and in just over one week more than 1,750 older adults have registered and numbers are continuing to rise.
Gollwitzer, P. M., &Brandstaetter, V. (1997). Implementation intentions and effective goal pursuit. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 73, 186-199

Howlett, N., Trivedi, D., Troop, N.A., Chater A.M. (2018) Are physical activity interventions for healthy inactive adults effective in promoting behavior change and maintenance, and which behavior change techniques are effective? A systematic review and meta-analysis. Translational Behavioral Medicine, 28.02.2018

Michie, S., van Stralen, M. M., West, R. (2011) The behaviour change wheel: A new method for characterising and designing behaviour change interventions.Implementation Science, 6:42
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