Social support for exercise from pregnancy to postpartum and the potential impact of a mobile application: A randomized control pilot trial in Southern United States

Madhawa Perera, Gregory S. Hawk, Taniya S. Nagpal, Rachel A. Tinius

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This study compared perceived social support among women of all body mass index (BMI) categories with an attempt to assess the efficacy of the BumptUp® mobile application to improve social support for exercise during pregnancy and postpartum. Thirty-five pregnant women living in Southern United States were included in the sample. The intervention group received access to the BumptUp® mobile application that was designed to promote physical activity during pregnancy and postpartum. The control group received an evidence-based educational brochure. Perceived social support for exercise was assessed at four-time points using the social support and exercise survey. Outcomes were evaluated at 23–25, 35–37 gestational weeks, and 6 and 12 weeks postpartum. Based on their pre-pregnancy weight and height, BMI was computed to categorize participants into lean, overweight, and obese groups. Social support across BMI categories and between control and intervention groups were compared using linear mixed-effect models. Women grouped in the overweight and obese BMI categories reported receiving significantly lower levels of social support for exercise than women in the lean category throughout pregnancy and postpartum during mid-pregnancy, late pregnancy, and at 12 weeks postpartum (p < 0.05). Although the intervention group received higher social support than the control group throughout all four assessment points, the difference was not statistically significant (p > 0.05). Women with a pre-pregnancy BMI of overweight and obese received lower social support for exercise during pregnancy and postpartum. The efficacy of BumptUp® to improve perceived social support for exercise in pregnancy and postpartum was not evident in the results.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102485
JournalPreventive Medicine Reports
Volume36
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023

Keywords

  • Exercise
  • Physical activity
  • Postpartum
  • Pregnancy
  • eHealth
  • mHealth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Informatics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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