McPherson K, Bronars C, Patten C, Decker P, Hughes C, Levine J, Vickers-Douglas K, Williams M & Ussher M (2014) Understanding word preference for description of exercise interventions as a means for enhancing recruitment and acceptability of exercise treatment among adults treated for depression. Mental Health and Physical Activity, 7 (2), pp. 73-77. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.mhpa.2014.05.001
Background: The importance of consumer preferences in the marketing and design of exercise and other health promotion interventions has received increasing attention. This study examined word preference for descriptions of an exercise intervention among 464 adults treated for depression. We also explored differences in word preference by current depression status, current smoking status and other demographic characteristics.
Methods: Respondents completed a mailed survey. They were asked to rate the likelihood of seeking out an exercise program described by 14 different adjectives (i.e., realistic and innovative) on a 5 point scale. Scale responses were dichotomized as 0, 1, 2 (not at all/a little/moderately) versus 3, 4 (quite a bit/extremely). Words endorsed as quite a bit/extremely likely in over half of the sample indicated consensus.
Results: Respondents were 82% female, 95% Caucasian, 22% were currently depressed (PHQ-2 score), and 14% were current smokers. Only 4 words met consensus criteria for likelihood of seeking out an exercise program: realistic, doable, fun and energizing. Programs described as novel, new, innovative along with vigorous or intense were not rated highly. Currently depressed individuals were less likely than non-depressed respondents to seek out an exercise program described as energizing (p = 0.014), but there were no differences in endorsing realistic, doable, or fun by current depression status. No significant differences were detected between current smokers and nonsmokers in likelihood of seeking out exercise programs being realistic, doable, fun, or energizing.
Conclusion: As a preliminary study, the results suggest there is a clear preference profile for exercise program descriptions which could be tapped to promote such programs and enhance recruitment.
Exercise preferences; depression; depression treatment; physical activity descriptors; exercise coaching; cigarette smoking;
Mental Health and Physical Activity: Volume 7, Issue 2
|Publication date online||31/05/2014|
|Date accepted by journal||08/05/2014|