Cochrane Summaries

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Face-to-face versus remote and web 2.0 interventions for promoting physical activity

Richards J, Thorogood M, Hillsdon M, Foster C
Published Online: 
1 October 2013

Participating in insufficient amounts of physical activity leads to an increased risk of a number of chronic diseases, and physical and mental health problems. Regular physical activity should be a goal for all adults and it can provide social, emotional and physical health benefits. The majority of adults are not active at recommended levels. We looked at studies that had compared two approaches to promoting physical activity (face-to-face with a professional versus using technologies that enabled remote prescription) to decide which approach was better. We know from other work that both approaches are successful. We found only one study with 225 apparently healthy adults in the medical literature to answer our question. Therefore, we remain unclear about which approach is best for promoting physical activity and cardio-respiratory fitness. We are also unable to comment authoritatively on adverse events and the influence of the delivery method.