Factors associated with direct support professionals’ behaviour in the physical activity support provided to people with intellectual disabilities

Bossink, L. W. M., van der Putten, A. A. J., Paap, M. C. S. & Vlaskamp, C., Aug-2019, In : Journal of Intellectual Disability Research. 63, 8, p. 981-991 11 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Direct support professionals play an important role in facilitating physical activity support for people with intellectual disabilities (ID). This study examined how the characteristics of people with ID and the characteristics of direct support professionals are related to the professionals' behaviour when supporting people with ID in physical activity.

A cross‐sectional approach was used. Direct support professionals (n = 217) who support people with ID completed a self‐report questionnaire, which aimed to measure the components that produced behaviour when providing physical activity support for people with ID. Associations with the characteristics of people with ID and the characteristics of the professionals were analysed using multivariate linear regression models.

The results demonstrate that the professionals' characteristics – such as age, workplace and training – were related to the variance in the components that theoretically produced the direct support professionals' behaviour. The characteristics of the people with ID did not contribute to the variance in the direct support professionals' behaviour.

The findings suggest that professional characteristics are the dominant reasons for the differences observed in the capability, opportunity and motivation of direct support professionals to provide physical activity support. This study also underscores the need for integrated training programmes to help direct support professionals promote physical activity in people with ID.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)981-991
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Intellectual Disability Research
Issue number8
Early online date3-Apr-2019
Publication statusPublished - Aug-2019


  • direct support professionals, intellectual disability, physical activity promotion, Professional behaviour, professional support, SMALL COMMUNITY HOMES, ADULTS, STAFF, RESIDENCES, PROMOTION, HEALTH, IMPACT

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