Systematic Review of Theory-Based Interventions Aimed at Increasing Physical Activity in Individuals With Spinal Cord Injury

Academic Article


  • Background: Approximately 200 000 individuals have a spinal cord injury (SCI) and more than 12 000 new cases are diagnosed each year in the United States. Lowered physical functioning caused by SCI often leads to a sedentary lifestyle, increasing risk for chronic diseases, secondary medical conditions, and lower quality of life. Purpose: The aim of this investigation was to conduct a systematic review for physical activity interventions among people with SCI. Methods: Several databases were used with search terms “spinal cord injury,” “physical activity” and “intervention.” Inclusion and exclusion criteria were used. Results: The search strategy returned a total of 112 hits and after refinement resulted in 10 studies satisfying both the inclusion and exclusion criteria, with 9 being unique. Discussion: The strengths of the studies include 4 randomized controlled trials, use of theoretical frameworks, and consistent outcome measures; weaknesses included low sample sizes, lacking a true control group, and the limitations of self-report of physical activity. Translation to Health Education Practice: Recommendation for more physical activity programs to be developed for individuals with SCI. Strategies are provided for intervention design, implementation, and evaluation.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Wilroy J; Knowlden A
  • Start Page

  • 163
  • End Page

  • 175
  • Volume

  • 47
  • Issue

  • 3