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A Qualitative Examination of Perceptions of Physical Activity Guidelines and Preferences for Format

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A descriptive exploratory study was conducted to gain an understanding of public perceptions of physical activity guidelines and to discover what formats appeal to participants. Canada’s Physical Activity Guide (CPAG) was used as an example of such guidelines. Data were collected from 22 participants in five focus groups (composed of female undergraduate students, female office workers, male office workers, participants in a Type II diabetes rehabilitation program, and participants in a cardiovascular rehabilitation program). Cross-case qualitative analyses were conducted. Six themes emerged under the general categories of familiarity and preferences for PA promotional materials. In terms of familiarity, participants lacked awareness of CPAG and criticized its format. In terms of preferences, participants encouraged the use of stylistically similar messaging to those used by commercial advertisers, wanted personal stories, Internet-based media, and the use of celebrities’ success stories. There was little awareness of CPAG and the current format was unappealing.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)908-916
JournalHealth Promotion Practice
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2010
Externally publishedYes

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