Improvements in biometric health measures among individuals with intellectual disabilities: A controlled evaluation of the Fit 5 program
بهبود اقدامات سلامت بیومتریک در افراد دارای معلولیت فکری: ارزیابی کنترل شده از برنامه Fit 5-2021
Background: Individuals with intellectual disabilities (ID) have poorer health statuses compared to the general population. Actions are needed to address
health disparities and promote healthy lifestyles among individuals with ID. Moreover, studies that consider program settings for this population are needed. Objective: The Special Olympics health program, Fit 5, was evaluated to assess effectiveness in improving health measures for individuals with ID. The settings of programs’ implementation were also considered. Methods: Four Special Olympics basketball teams participated as an intervention group, and three teams as a control group, in a study of the Fit 5 program that was implemented during, and as part of, a regular 8-week basketball season. Resting heart rate (RHR) and blood pressure, and height and weight to calculate Body Mass Index (BMI), were measured before and after the program. Differences in pre- and post-measures were compared between the two groups with paired samples t-tests and ANCOVA. Results: Participants in the intervention group had signiﬁcantly greater improvements in resting systolic and diastolic blood pressures (p ¼ 0.02 and 0.03, respectively) and RHR (p ¼ 0.003). BMI increased for both groups; however, the increase in the intervention group was signiﬁcantly less (p ¼ 0.006). The Special Olympics setting was considered familiar and supportive and effectively reached individuals with ID.
Conclusion: The Fit 5 program positively impacts RHR and blood pressure, and could help reduce extents of BMI increases, in individuals with ID when implemented in a common setting. Further investigation of the impact of Fit 5 and similar programs in additional settings is warranted.© 2020 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Keywords: Intellectual disability | Health promotion | Physical activity | Health risk factors | Program settings