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Applying Mobile Technology to Sustain Physical Activity After Completion of Cardiac Rehabilitation: Acceptability Study.
Published Web Locationhttps://doi.org/10.2196/25356
BackgroundMany patients do not meet the recommended levels of physical activity after completing a cardiac rehabilitation (CR) program. Wearable activity trackers and mobile phone apps are promising potential self-management tools for maintaining physical activity after CR completion.
ObjectiveThis study aims to evaluate the acceptability of a wearable device, mobile app, and push messages to facilitate physical activity following CR completion.
MethodsWe used semistructured interviews to assess the acceptability of various mobile technologies after participation in a pilot randomized controlled trial. Intervention patients in the randomized controlled trial wore the Fitbit Charge 2, used the Movn mobile app, and received push messages on cardiovascular disease prevention and physical activity for over 2 months. We asked 26 intervention group participants for feedback about their experience with the technology and conducted semistructured individual interviews with 7 representative participants. We used thematic analysis to create the main themes from individual interviews.
ResultsOur sample included participants with a mean age of 66.7 (SD 8.6) years; 23% (6/26) were female. Overall, there were varying levels of satisfaction with different technology components. There were 7 participants who completed the satisfaction questionnaires and participated in the interviews. The Fitbit and Movn mobile app received high satisfaction scores of 4.86 and 4.5, respectively, whereas push messages had a score of 3.14 out of 5. We identified four main themes through the interviews: technology use increased motivation to be physically active, technology use served as a reminder to be physically active, recommendations for technology to improve user experience, and desire for personal feedback.
ConclusionsBy applying a wearable activity tracker, mobile phone app, and push messages, our study showed strong potential for the adoption of new technologies by older adults to maintain physical activity after CR completion. Future research should include a larger sample over a longer period using a mixed methods approach to assess the efficacy of technology use for promoting long-term physical activity behavior in older adults.
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