Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


43rd Annual Convention; Denver, CO; 2017

Event Details

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Symposium #109
CE Offered: BACB
Recent Research in Assessing and Increasing Physical Activity
Saturday, May 27, 2017
5:00 PM–5:50 PM
Hyatt Regency, Capitol Ballroom 4
Area: CBM; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Carole M. Van Camp (University of North Carolina Wilmington)
CE Instructor: Carole M. Van Camp, Ph.D.
Abstract: Research presented in this symposium focuses on behavioral and innovations in the assessment and promotion of physical activity. Proctor and colleagues will present on a contingency management intervention involving deposit (and non-deposit) contracts and escalating schedules of reinforcement with a reset contingency to increase daily step totals in healthy adults. Blejewski and colleagues will present on a method to determine individualized heart rate zones indicative of moderate and vigorous physical activity in typically developing school-aged children, in comparison to standardized criteria. Morley and colleague will present on fluency training in gross-motor skills to increase moderate to vigorous physical activity in typically developing preschool children across multiple play contexts.
Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): Contingency Management, Fitness, Fluency Training, Physical Activity
Using a Deposit Contract and Escalating Schedule of Reinforcement to Increase Physical Activity in Adults
KAITLYN PROCTOR (University of North Carolina Wilmington), Wendy Donlin Washington Washington (University of North Carolina Wilmington)
Abstract: Most adults are underactive. This 5-week study aimed to increase physical activity in underactive adults using financial incentives. Participants (aged 18-65) wore an accelerometer while awake. During baseline, participants were instructed to behave as they normally would. Half of the participants were required to make a $25 deposit to help fund their three-week intervention, which used an escalating schedule of reinforcement with a reset contingency. Meeting the first individualized goal resulted in $0.25, with each subsequent goal worth an additional $0.25. Failure to meet a goal resulted in a reset in reinforcement value to $0.25. If all goals were met during intervention, the total amount available was $57.75. During the return to baseline period, the participants wore the Fitbit for one week without goals or reinforcement. Changes in daily step counts will be presented for all individual subjects. Group comparisons for the deposit requirement will be discussed. Correlations of step count with age, gender, and body fat composition will be presented.
Assessing and Increasing Physical Activity in Children Across Different Contexts
RYAN BLEJEWSKI (University of North Carolina Wilmington ), Carole M. Van Camp (University of North Carolina Wilmington), Lindsay E. Gordon (University of North Carolina Wilmington), Alison Ruby (University of North Carolina Wilmington)
Abstract: Increasing physical activity in children is a growing concern as children only engage in 14.7 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) a day. However, the standard comparison for heart rate (HR) measures is typically evaluated by taking 65 and 85% of an individual’s max HR. The purpose of the current study was to evaluate the usefulness of these standards in comparison to a personalized baseline measure of HR across activities indicative of MVPA. Children wore HR monitors to track their levels of physical activity across different activities which included running, basketball, soccer, and playing on the playground. The HR measures within each of these activities was then compared to 65-86% of their max HR, as well as a personalized HR measure based on a series of four activities (sitting, walking slowly, walking briskly, and running). Results indicated the 65-86% of an individual’s max HR may be more liberal than the individualized HR when determining the lower cutoff level for HR as it was typically 10 beats per minute (BPM) lower than the individualized HR. These results suggest it may be beneficial to determine individualized HR measures for MVPA as they may be more sensitive to individual differences across children.
The Effects of Gross-Motor Fluency Training on Physical Activity Levels in Young Children
ALLISON J. MORLEY (Syracuse University), Brian K. Martens (Syracuse University)
Abstract: Engaging in regular physical activity is one of the most important factors related to good health. However, efficient and effective interventions to increase physical activity in young children are lacking. In this study, the effects of fluency training in six gross-motor skills on levels of Moderate to Vigorous Physical Activity (MVPA) by four typically developing preschool children during free play sessions were evaluated. Specifically, a multi-element design was implemented across three play contexts (i.e., outdoor toys (OT), open space (OS), fixed equipment (FE)), with one context serving as a no-training control. Exact interobserver agreement was calculated for 33% of play probes and the average ranged between 93%-99% across participants. Results indicated that upon fluency training in skills relevant to the OT context, the cumulative percentage slope of MVPA increased in the OT context, but remained flatter in the OS and FE contexts for all participants. Upon fluency training in skills relevant to the OS context, the cumulative percentage slope of MVPA increased to varying degrees across participants and continued to increase in the OT context, while remaining flatter in the FE context.



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