New app makes it easier to give advice on physical activity

Poor physical fitness is observed both in healthy people and in people with various pathological conditions.

To promote health but also to prevent or improve high blood pressure, stroke, angina, heart attack, diabetes, osteoporosis and depression, healthcare professionals need to be able to support people to increase their level of activity.

In order to prescribe the appropriate dose of physical activity to patients with a prescription, healthcare professionals need to consider a number of individual factors.

– It is clear that the starting position when starting training varies from person to person and the type of activity that corresponds to the recommendations of the intensity should be adapted accordingly. As part of rehabilitation therapy, it is important to know the patient’s fitness status, says Anita Wiesen, a physical therapist and researcher at Lund University.

Advanced and expensive exams

To assess a person’s current condition, the most accurate measurement is to measure oxygen uptake capacity through various fitness tests. But the tests are advanced and time consuming. Both expensive equipment and trained personnel are needed.

The easiest way is for a person to rate their own condition using the RPC scale ( Persevered stress rating), a method developed by Anita Wisén.

The scale is well described in FYSS, an evidence-based support for prescription physical activity and equivalent to FASS (Facts and Information About Medications, editors comment).

The scale is also included as a relevant assessment tool and assessment in prevention and in various disease states. By estimating the perceived effort on a scale with metabolic equivalents, one can calculate a person’s maximum oxygen uptake.

Individual counseling is facilitated

The training dose is basic, but it can be hard to tell. So there is a need to automate calculations and clarify advice on training intensity for different individuals.

It’s important for healthcare professionals to be able to individualize their advice and not just give general advice when type and intensity are described when cardio training is prescribed, says Anita Wiesen.

So I decided to develop the app “My fitness – RPC”. The app automatically performs individual calculations of your recommended fitness level and intensity when you enter basic facts such as gender, age, weight and height as well as an RPC-rated fitness level.

Through this, healthcare personnel can more quickly and easily provide individual advice on the appropriate type of cardio training, as well as the appropriate interval between intensity and heart rate.

Practice diary to find out the goals

In addition to estimating the level of fitness and calculating the intensity, the application also contains a diary that allows the person to document their training and see what percentage of the recommended goals have been achieved.

Not only is this a tool that healthcare professionals can use when prescribing physical activity with a prescription, but the app is for everyone who wants to know their fitness level and wants to get started with fitness training and continue training development, says Anita Wissen.

Contact:

Anita Wissen, Physiotherapist, Assistant Professor and Researcher at Lund University, anita.wisen@med.lu.se

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