Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


38th Annual Convention; Seattle, WA; 2012

Event Details

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Symposium #157
CE Offered: BACB
Innovations in the Promotion of Physical Activity
Sunday, May 27, 2012
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
4C-3 (Convention Center)
Area: CBM; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Carole M. Van Camp (University of North Carolina, Wilmington)
CE Instructor: Carole M. Van Camp, Ph.D.

Research presented in this symposium focuses on behavioral and technological innovations in the promotion of physical activity. Miller and colleagues will present a package intervention (including goal setting, self-monitoring, and feedback) to increase daily step totals in healthy adults. Gibson and colleagues will present a contingency management intervention to increase physical activity in healthy adults. Both of these studies utilized the Fitbit device to collect step count and activity level data. Benitez-Santiago and Miltenberger will present a study that utilized video feedback to enhance martial arts performance in healthy adults. Dittrick and Cameron will present a package intervention (including self-monitoring, goal setting, correspondence training, social support systems, stimulus control, shaping, and relapse prevention) to increase variables related to exercise in normal-weight, overweight, and obese adults.

Keyword(s): Contingency Management, Exercise, Feedback, Fitness
The Effects of a Web-Based Fitness Monitoring System on Physical Activity in Overweight and Obese Adults
BRYON MILLER (University of the Pacific), Matthew P. Normand (University of the Pacific), Rutvi Patel (University of the Pacific)
Abstract: Normand (2008) evaluated a package intervention to increase daily step totals using goal setting, self-monitoring, and feedback with healthy adults. The use of a standard pedometer in this study required the researcher to meet with participants weekly and did not provide the wearer with any additional feedback beyond daily step totals. The FitbitTM is a small, wearable accelerometer that works in conjunction with web-based monitoring feedback tools that provide the researcher and wearer with additional information compared to a standard pedometer. The purpose of the current study was to extend the Normand (2008) methodology using the step count and activity intensity measures from the FitbitTM device. The data thus far suggest that access to information from the device and use of the FitbitTM website did not produce significant increases in step totals for any participants. However, overall activity intensity did increase from baseline levels for some participants. These data suggest that more invasive intervention components such as goal setting might be necessary to more consistently and substantially increase both step totals and activity intensity, at least for some people.

Bouts of Exercise: Stepping up to a Log-Survivor Analysis

AMANDA L. GIBSON (University of North Carolina, Wilmington), Kelly Wall (University of North Carolina, Wilmington), Kelly Banna (Wichita State University), Wendy Donlin Washington (University of North Carolina, Wilmington)

Most American adults would not be classified as physically active according to CDC guidelines (2010). Contingency management interventions have been used to target physical activity with mixed effects. Some adults respond to contingency based interventions (responders), while others are insensitive (non-responders). In a contingency management study in our lab, healthy adults wore a Fitbit pedometer and earned prize draws when reaching a daily step criterion based upon a percentile schedule of reinforcement. Ten out of the fifteen participants increased average daily walking by at least 1000 steps, and were categorized as responders to the intervention. We compare structural features of activity between responders and non-responders. Low baseline activity predicted greatest change increases in steps per day. Additionally, a log-survivor analysis of inter-step intervals revealed that subjects could meet criterion by increasing the average length of bouts, frequency of bouts, or rate of stepping within a bout. This analysis informs how specific features of baseline activity levels can be used to tailor interventions to increase physical activity.


Behavior Analytic Approach to Increase Exercise Behavior in Adults

GRETCHEN A. DITTRICH (Simmons College), Michael J. Cameron (Cameron Consultation, LLC)

Moderate daily physical activity provides many important health benefits, including a reduced risk of developing certain cancers, cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, obesity, osteoporosis, and arthritis, and exercise improves hypertension, high cholesterol, and symptoms of anxiety and depression. However, 70% of American adults live a sedentary lifestyle. The current study evaluated a behavior analytic treatment to increase exercise in people who were normal-weight, overweight, and obese. This study was innovative and utilized a variety of empirically validated methods to establish and maintain exercise behavior, which may replace more sedentary behavior. These methods included: self-monitoring, goal setting, correspondence training, social support systems, stimulus control, shaping, and relapse prevention. The program introduced a variety of independent variables simultaneously, assessed multiple dependent variables related to exercise, and directly measured indicators of improved health. Results indicated that there was a statistically significant increase between pre-intervention and post-intervention levels of exercise duration, frequency, and intensity, and there was a statistically significant decrease in interresponse time between workouts following implementation of the program. Participants also increased the variety of exercise, experienced improvements in health, and demonstrated increased strength and endurance. The current study adds to the literature regarding effective treatments for sedentary living.


Using Video Feedback to Improve Martial-Arts Performance

ANGELA BENITEZ SANTIAGO (University of South Florida), Raymond G. Miltenberger (University of South Florida)

This study used video feedback to enhance the martial arts performance of capoeira, an Afro-Brazilian martial art that utilizes acrobatic movements (revesado, au de costa, and macaco). A multiple baseline across behaviors was used for 5 participants. Baseline conditions consisted of standard coaching that continued throughout all phases of the study. The intervention consisted of video feedback, in which the participants were filmed attempting a movement and immediately viewed the video afterwards, while receiving positive and corrective feedback from the instructor, using the pause, slow motion, and replay controls. The target behaviors were scored on a 15-item checklist, resulting in a percentage correct. A second video feedback condition similar to the first was also introduced to some participants, in which participants were able to practice the movements with live feedback before being filmed again. Results show an increase in the performance of the skills for each target behavior during the video feedback conditions.




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