mHealth text messaging for physical activity promotion in college students: A formative participatory approach

Alice Fang Yan, Patricia Stevens, Youfa Wang, Lance Weinhardt, Cheryl L. Holt, Carrie O'Connor, Tiffany Feller, Hui Xie, Sara Luelloff

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Objectives: To develop mobile-based physical activity promotion text messages, understand users' preferences, and assess feasibility and acceptability in a college student sample. Methods: Five focus groups (N = 33) were conducted using a participatory approach. An Audience Response System was adopted for data collection to ensure confidentiality and for directing the discussion foci. A framework analysis of transcribed focus group discussions was conducted. Atlas. ti qualitative analysis software was used to manage the data. Results: Participants were uniformly enthusiastic about a text message-based intervention to encourage regular physical activity. They also preferred positive, supportive personally tailored messages. Participants placed a high value on messages related to establishing and monitoring realistic and achievable goals. Conclusions: mHealth text messaging was well received. The results support the feasibility and acceptance of such an intervention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)395-408
Number of pages14
JournalAmerican Journal of Health Behavior
Volume39
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2015

Keywords

  • College students
  • Participatory approach
  • Physical activity
  • Text messaging
  • mHealth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Social Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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