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Table 4 Description of methods and strategies used in the intervention study

From: Using the Intervention Mapping protocol to develop a family-based intervention for improving lifestyle habits among overweight and obese children: study protocol for a quasi-experimental trial

Determinant Theoretical methods Strategy Tools/materials
1) Personal
Knowledge and risk perception
(Diet, PA, Screen-time)
Consciousness raising (HBM; TTM) Providing written and verbal information about the study Letters sent to all parents of children in preschool and 3rd grade providing information about the research study and target group
Public health nurse (PHN) contact the target group (parents) by phone and invite them to participate in the study. An information folder, which explains participatory process to parents, is sent to their home-address or delivered during their first consult
Provide tailored information to increase healthy lifestyle habits during the intervention period Tailored brochures and information folders focusing on physical activity, diet, sleep and family structure
Awareness, risk perception & health believes
(Diet, PA, Screen-time)
Information about personal risk (PAPM)
Consciousness raising (HBM)
Personalized risk feedback from health screening Expert registration/ monitoring and evaluation of BMI, dietary habits, physical activity level, sleep habits etc. in relation to national recommendations or recommendations by the research group
Scenario-based risk information (PAPM) Providing risk information Tailored brochures focusing on long-term effects and information on benefits of healthy behavior
(Diet, PA, Screen-time)
Arguments (PCM) and feedback Providing personal feedback to parents and children PHN provides feedback on (perceived) positive consequences of healthy lifestyle habits
Instructors give positive feedback during activity sessions
Modeling (SCT) Role models describing the benefits associated with a healthy lifestyle Web movies
Active learning (TSR) Game promoting increased intake of fruit and vegetables Rainbow shaped and colored vinyl sheets and colorful fruit and vegetable shaped self-adhesive stickers
Skills /self-regulation (PA)
(Diet, PA, Screen-time)
Guided practice, active learning (SCT; TSR) Organized activities with high intensity and different levels of coordination. Tailored brochures and information folders describing how to organize different activities (for activity leaders)
Information folders suggesting a variety of different high intensity exercises (for activity leaders)
Provide specific suggestions for locally adapted parent-child leisure time activities (with high intensity) and strategies to reduce sedentary time/ screen time Tailored brochures and oral information provided during individual family counselling meetings
Parents and children prepare healthy meals together to improve hands-on practical cooking skills A trained course coordinator. Detailed instructions describing necessary preparations and tips for conducting nutrition courses. Recipes for healthy dishes for all main meals
(Diet, PA, Screen-time)
Goal setting and feedback (GST) Formulation of maximum 3 challenging and feasible goals in close cooperation between health personnel and parents PHN assist in goal setting using a contract that is signed by the parents
Persuasive persuasion (SCT) Encourage and convince parents to follow up the program PHN-parents during individual family counselling meetings and power point presentations delivered as part of the course
Guided practice, mastery experience, and feedback (SCT; TSR) Organized activity groups (children) and cooking lessons (children and parents). Provide positive feedback whenever necessary and possible. Offer guided practice Professional/trained instructors provide feedback during individual family counselling meetings and organized activity groups and cooking lessons
(Diet, PA, Screen-time)
Autonomy building (SDT) Motivational interviewing during individual coaching sessions Trained PHN
Persuasive communication (SCT) Participation in group sessions, nutrition courses Tailored educational material including power point presentations, verbal communication and information brochures
2) Home environment
Social influence
(Diet, PA, Screen-time)
Mobilize social support and resistance to social pressure (TPB) Involve both parents, and significant others such as grandparents etc. Tailored brochures and information folders and oral information provided during individual family counselling meetings
Positive reinforcement (SCT) Providing feedback evaluation of change process The results from follow-up tests are delivered by PHN
(Diet, PA)
Feedback, personal improvement, planning (TL; GST) Practice in training, feedback on performance, and support with questions Information folders and oral information provided during individual family counselling meetings and courses
  1. HBM health believe model, TTM trans-theoretical model, PAPM precaution-adoption process model, PCM persuation-communication matrix, SCT social cognitive theory, TSR theory of self-regulation, GST goal setting theory, SDT self-determination theory, TPB theory of planned behavior, TL theories of learning