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Adherence support strategies for exercise interventions in people with mild cognitive impairment and dementia: a systematic review

van der Wardt, Veronika; Hancox, Jennie; Gondek, Dawid; Logan, Pip; das Nair, Roshan; Pollock, Kristian; Harwood, Rowan H.


Jennie Hancox

Dawid Gondek

Professor of Rehabilitation Research

Professor of Clinical Psychology and Neuropsychology

Rowan H. Harwood


Exercise-based therapy may improve health status for people with Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) or dementia but cannot work without adherence, which has proven difficult. This review aimed to evaluate strategies to support adherence among people with MCI or Dementia and was completed in Nottingham/UK in 2017. A narrative synthesis was used to investigate the effectiveness or usefulness of adherence support strategies. Fifteen adherence support strategies were used including theoretical underpinning (programmes based on behavior change theories), individual tailoring, worksheets and exercise booklets, goal setting, phone calls or reminders, newsletters, support to overcome exercise barriers, information, adaptation periods, individual supervision, support for clinicians, group setting, music, accelerometers/pedometers and emphasis on enjoyable activities. Music was the only strategy that was investigated in a comparative design but was found to be effective only for those who were generally interested in participating in activities. A wide range of adherence support strategies are being included in exercise interventions for people with MCI or dementia, but the evidence regarding their effectiveness is limited.


van der Wardt, V., Hancox, J., Gondek, D., Logan, P., das Nair, R., Pollock, K., & Harwood, R. H. (2017). Adherence support strategies for exercise interventions in people with mild cognitive impairment and dementia: a systematic review. Preventive Medicine Reports, 7,

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date May 15, 2017
Online Publication Date May 18, 2017
Publication Date Sep 30, 2017
Deposit Date Jul 7, 2017
Publicly Available Date Jul 7, 2017
Journal Preventive Medicine Reports
Electronic ISSN 2211-3355
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 7
Keywords Dementia, Mild cognitive impairment, Exercise, adherence, Compliance, Motivator, Adherence support, Behavior change
Public URL
Publisher URL


1-s2.0-S2211335517300852-main.pdf (498 Kb)

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