The Vital@Work study. The development and evaluation of a lifestyle intervention in order to improve older workers vitality (WC2007-009)

Methods

Starting date: 01/12/2007

The Vital@Work intervention was developed using the Intervention Mapping (IM) protocol, which is a stepwise process for theory- and evidence-based development of a health promotion intervention. Based on IM, a 6-months lasting lifestyle intervention was developed consisting a Vitality Exercise Programme (VEP) combined with three visits to a Personal Vitality Coach (PVC), aimed at goal setting, feedback, and problem solving. The VEP consisted of: 1) once a week a guided yoga group session aimed at relaxation exercises, 2) once a week a guided aerobic workout group session aimed at improving aerobic fitness, and 3) older workers were asked to perform once a week for at least 45 minutes vigorous physical activity without face-to-face instructions (e.g. fitness). Supplementary, free fruit was offered at the guided group sessions of the VEP to promote a healthy lifestyle.

The effectiveness of the intervention will be evaluated in a RCT among 730 older workers (aged 45 years) of two major academic hospitals in the Netherlands. Workers randomised to the intervention group (n=367) received the 6-months Vital@Work intervention. Workers randomised to the control group (n=363) received once (i.e. at the start of the evaluation period) written information about healthy lifestyle choices. At baseline, after 6 and 12 months, measurements (primary: physical activity, health-related fitness and vitality, and secondary: cost-effectiveness, work-engagement and productivity) took place. Results regarding the effectiveness of the Vital@Work intervention are expected at the end of 2011.