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Title: Predicting and understanding physical activity behaviour during pregnancy : a multiphase investigation
Author: De Vivo, Marlize
ISNI:       0000 0004 6349 1310
Awarding Body: Canterbury Christ Church University
Current Institution: Canterbury Christ Church University
Date of Award: 2017
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Background: The benefits of physical activity during pregnancy extend to both mother and baby, however, little is known about the reasoning behind expecting mothers' decision to initiate or maintain regular participation during this period. Objective: The main purpose of this research project was to investigate the socio-cognitive determinants of pregnant women's physical activity behaviour. Method: A mixed methods research approach using a multiphase design with the Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB) as conceptual framework guided the investigation. Application of the TPB required both qualitative (Study One; n = 18) and quantitative (Study Two; n = 78) cross-sectional data to be collected which addressed the aims of understanding and predicting physical activity behaviour during pregnancy. A further qualitative study (Study Three; n = 10) involving semi-structured interviews with community midwives augmented the investigation. Results: Whilst findings from individual studies have merit, a major strength of this study pertain to the 'meta-inferences' drawn from the combination of studies. Specifically, findings suggest that (1) pregnant women do not have access to the necessary information that would allow them to make informed decisions regarding their engagement in physical activities; (2) a co-ordinated effort is required to support pregnant women in overcoming barriers associated with regular exercise participation; and (3) profiling pregnant women according to motivation and behaviour status could serve as a useful and manageable starting point for intervening to produce positive changes in pregnant women's physical activity behaviour. Conclusion: In achieving better health and ensuring greater health outcomes for mothers and babies it is necessary to consider the factors involved in behaviour change, identify opportune moments to intervene, and involve health professionals in facilitating and supporting the lifestyle changes that may be required.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: RA0781 Physical fitness. Exercise ; RG0551 Pregnancy