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Motivating Physical Activity – Because I Said So

October 27, 2010
Fire ants

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Right now I’m all about exercise psychology. I’m reading three books for my class and I feel like lightbulbs are turning on all over.

I’m learning about how to get to know people in order to figure out the best way to help them succeed in a healthy lifestyle. I think the pivot point is that there really is no “right way” to be healthy.

Every individual has different habits, history and preferences.

Without learning these, it’s really tough to give good advice on lifestyle changes.

In fact, I just read from Duke University that the use of motivational interviewing (where you put the patient in charge, ask questions, give support to their opinions/concerns) by doctors showed a dose-response relationship with patient weight loss.

So, doctors who gave personal attention to patients regarding their weight loss issues had patients who lost weight. More MI techniques = greater weight loss.

Doctors who used confrontation or commands had patients who maintained or gained weight.

“Because I said so” doesn’t motivate anyone.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. October 27, 2010 5:19 pm

    Shoot, so my usual technique — AH done sayed so!–to get my sister to write funny stuff about exercise might not be working? Maybe bribery or flattery. Sounds as though you are learning lots and oodles!

    • October 27, 2010 7:45 pm

      It’s funny because I’m actually using my sister for a project in the class. As the older sister, I have often resorted to a bit of bullying to get her to do things…for her own good, of course. No wonder that wasn’t working.

  2. October 27, 2010 7:12 pm

    Motivation sure is a hot topic right now. I just turned in an edit for the Feb. issue for IDEA Fitness Journal on motivation techniques for personal trainers, we have a post coming up tomorrow on the topic and now your excellent post. Go get ’em you!

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