The Effectiveness and Perceptions of Three Moderate Intensity Walking Cadence Aids and their Effects on Affective States: A Mixed Methods Study

Daniel Brown, Phillip M Gray, Julie Doherty, Ellen E A Simpson

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Abstract

Substantial health benefits can be derived from walking at a moderate intensity cadence. To help regulate this cadence, three distinct aids exist 1) self-perception; 2) cadence prescription; 3) auditory cues. This study aimed to compare the effectiveness and explore perceptions of these aids to promote moderate intensity walking and effects on affective states, thereby addressing an important research gap. Individualised moderate relative intensity waking cadence was determined for participants (n = 23, = 26.35, SD = 10.11). A convergent mixed-methods design was employed. A within-persons repeated measures design was used to explore the effectiveness of three aids (general guidelines, cadence prescription, and music) on promoting moderate intensity physical activity and positive affective states. Perceptions of these aids were elicited through qualitative interviews and thematic content analysis. Main effects for condition on relative physical activity intensity (η = .72) and positive affect (η = .25) were observed. Music evoked significantly higher relative physical activity intensity than other conditions (p values < .01), and higher positive affect compared to the general guidelines condition (p = .038). A significantly greater proportion of participants achieved moderate relative intensity physical activity during the music compared to general guidelines condition (p = .03). Congruently, qualitative findings suggested that participants predominantly perceived music as most effective for promoting a moderate intensity cadence and positive affect. However, individual variability existed in ability to utilise this aid. Implications of the findings for practitioners seeking to promote a moderate intensity cadence and positive affect during walking are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)531-550
Number of pages20
JournalInternational Journal of Exercise Science
Volume17
Issue number5
Early online date1 Apr 2024
Publication statusPublished online - 1 Apr 2024

Keywords

  • moderate intensity
  • walking
  • affect
  • cadence
  • music

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