Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Pedometer Use as a Motivational Tool for Increased Physical Activity in Bariatric Surgery Patients
by Hunka, Nicole, Ph.D., The University of Akron, 2011, 150; 10631010
Abstract (Summary)

Obesity is a significant health care crisis in the United States. It is associated with various physical and mental health problems, decreased quality of life, and significant medical costs. Bariatric surgery has become a popular intervention for weight management but successful, long-term outcomes are largely dependent on patients' behavioral and lifestyle changes, perhaps most notably, their motivation to engage in consistent physical activity. However, compliance with physical activity recommendations is consistently demonstrated as problematic for this population.

A better understanding of the psychological and theoretical variables that hinder bariatric patients' motivation for physical activity is necessary in order to better construct interventions to assist this population in behavior change. Unfortunately, theoretically guided interventions focused on influential psychological variables are often absent treatment components within bariatric surgery programs.

The current study applied Social-Cognitive Theory as a framework to conceptualize the problem of motivation for consistent physical activity specific to the post-operative bariatric surgery population. This study looked specifically at the impact of social-cognitive constructs of self-efficacy, goal setting, and objective performance feedback (via the use of pedometers) on motivation for engaging in physical activity. This study was unique not only in the theoretical constructs examined with post-operative bariatric patients, but also in that it used objective feedback devices (pedometers) to assist patients in both accurate self-monitoring and recorded activity levels.

Results indicated that self-efficacy did not impact the outcome as originally expected. However, the social-cognitive variable of feedback was demonstrated to be a significant factor in motivation for activity (walking). Overall, the general conclusion was that the performance feedback provided by pedometers can be used as a motivational tool to increase physical activity in the post-operative bariatric surgery population. Findings of this study may help bariatric treatment teams better assist their patients in setting and achieving personal physical activity goals to facilitate a long-term healthy weight and lifestyle.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Rogers, James R.
Commitee: Gilbertson, Alan D., Johnson, Dawn M., Kornspan, Alan S., Rogers, James R., Subich, Linda M.
School: The University of Akron
Department: Counseling Psychology
School Location: United States -- Ohio
Source: DAI-B 78/11(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Health sciences, Counseling Psychology, Psychology
Keywords: Bariatric surgery, Pedometers, Physical activity, Social-Cognitive Theory
Publication Number: 10631010
ISBN: 9780355013184
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