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EFFORT TO INCREASE PHYSICAL ACIVITY AMONG COMMUNITY WORKERS IN HORNAFJÖRÐUR, ICELAND. M. Ásmundardóttir 1 , Th. Sveinsson 2. 1: Southeastern Health Clinic , Hornafjordur Iceland ; 2: University of Iceland, Reykjavik, Iceland. Introduction.

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M. Ásmundardóttir1, Th. Sveinsson2

1: SoutheasternHealthClinic, HornafjordurIceland; 2: University of Iceland, Reykjavik, Iceland


Sedentary lifestyle is common in the world today and at the same time the prevalence of obesity and diabetes type 2 is increasing. This may lead to poorer public health and greater risk of lifestyle diseases. Employers are concerned about rising costs related to the health of their employee. Health promotion can lower health related costs, as studies have shown that interventions emphasizing physical activity (PA) can be effective in increasing or maintaining levels of PA.


No significant difference was found between groups in any of the changes in the outcome variables. The blood pressure lowered significantly during the study period for all three groups: systole from 127 to 121 mmHG (p=0.01) and diastole from 77 to 71 mmHG (p<0.001) (Graph 1) , whereas LDL cholesterol level increased; 2,9 to 3,1 mmol/L (p=0.01). PA decreased over time for all three groups; moderate-to-vigorous PA from 37 to 32 min/day (p=0.03) (Graph 2).

Graph 2. Results for PA measurements for all three groups


The aim of the study was to examine the effectiveness of two different types of health promotion in increasing PA and improve health among community workers in the town Hornafjörður in Iceland.

Discussion & Conclusions

It is clear that neither intervention was effective in changing PA of the employees or health indicators. In order to affect participants an intervention may need to include a component based on theories of behavioral changes, be more holistic and be a clear part of the workplace culture.

Materials & Methods

Community workers were invited to participate and 125 accepted, where 103 completed the study. Baseline measurements took place at the beginning of the study period. Participants were revaluated after a 6 month intervention and again 6 months after the intervention ended. Outcome measures included measurements of body composition (BMI, wast circumference and skinfolds), endurance (6 min submax bicycle test), resting blood pressure, blood parameters (total cholesterol, HDL and LDL cholesterol, triglyceride, blood sugar), quality of life (questionnaire), and PA (accelerometer). After the first measurements, the participants were randomly divided into three groups: two intervention groups and a control group. Both interventions emphasized PA. One research group received individual-based intervention with regular reminding and the other group received group-based intervention with standardized counselling once every month.


Graph 1. Results of bloodpressure (systolic and diastoic) measurements for all threegroups

ResearchCentre of MovementScience