Elsworth, Charlotte (2011)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.
This thesis incorporates five studies investigating physical activity and community mobility in individuals with multiple sclerosis (MS). 1. Pedometer step count accuracy was investigated whilst examining activity levels in individuals with neurological disease (n=43). The pedometers significantly under-estimated counts in this group. 2. The test-retest reliability of the Physical Activity Scale for the Elderly (PASE) was examined. People with MS (n=20) were found to have low activity levels with a test-retest reliability coefficient total PASE score of 0.934 (95% CI=0.62-0.97). 3. An observational study examined physical activity levels in individuals with MS using the PASE. Participants appeared to be less active than healthy individuals (69.6±50.11, 154.3±80.4 respectively). 4. A questionnaire (n=80) and focus group discussions (n=24) were used to gather user opinions regarding physical activity participation. Emerging themes were the desire to be active and the barriers and facilitators to participation. 5. A phase II RCT investigated the feasibility of a physical activity provision support system in people with MS (n=18). The approach successfully resulted in attendance at fitness centres and increased activity levels (but did not reach statistical significance). The 5 studies each present new data in the field. The implications are discussed with suggestions for further research.
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