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Understanding leisure centre-based physical activity after physical activity referral: evidence from scheme participants and completers in Northumberland UK

Bell, Jordan; Neubeck, Lis; Jin, Kai; Kelly, Paul; Hanson, Coral


Kai Jin

Paul Kelly


Physical activity referral schemes (PARS) are a popular physical activity (PA) intervention in the UK. Little is known about the type, intensity and duration of PA undertaken during and post PARS. We calculated weekly leisure centre-based moderate/vigorous PA for PARS participants (n = 448) and PARS completers (n = 746) in Northumberland, UK, between March 2019–February 2020 using administrative data. We categorised activity levels (< 30 min/week, 30–149 min/week and ≥ 150 min/week) and used ordinal regression to examine predictors for activity category achieved. PARS participants took part in a median of 57.0 min (IQR 26.0–90.0) and PARS completers a median of 68.0 min (IQR 42.0–100.0) moderate/vigorous leisure centre-based PA per week. Being a PARS completer (OR: 2.14, 95% CI: 1.61–2.82) was a positive predictor of achieving a higher level of physical activity category compared to PARS participants. Female PARS participants were less likely (OR: 0.65, 95% CI: 0.43–0.97) to achieve ≥ 30 min of moderate/vigorous LCPA per week compared to male PARS participants. PARS participants achieved 38.0% and PARS completers 45.3% of the World Health Organisation recommended ≥ 150 min of moderate/vigorous weekly PA through leisure centre use. Strategies integrated within PARS to promote PA outside of leisure centre-based activity may help participants achieve PA guidelines.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Mar 9, 2021
Online Publication Date Mar 13, 2021
Publication Date 2021
Deposit Date Mar 12, 2021
Publicly Available Date Mar 15, 2021
Journal International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Publisher MDPI
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 18
Issue 6
Article Number 2957
Keywords physical activity; exercise referral; public health; adherence
Public URL
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Understanding Leisure Centre-based Physical Activity After Physical Activity Referral: Evidence From Scheme Participants And Completers In Northumberland UK (429 Kb)

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Copyright Statement
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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