Optimising leisure participation: a pilot intervention study for adolescents with physical impairments
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PURPOSE: To assess the feasibility of an intervention to improve participation in leisure activities of adolescents with physical impairments by changing aspects of the activity or environment. METHODS: A pre-test/post-test pilot study of a multi-strategy intervention was used to explore the effectiveness of the strategies and to determine whether the intervention was practical to apply in a community setting. The intervention involved establishing adolescent and family focused goals, measuring and addressing environmental barriers and building activity performance skills. The Goal Attainment Scale (GAS) and the Canadian Occupational Performance Measure measured outcomes. RESULTS: Eight participants (aged 12-19 years; five males) with physical disabilities set participation goals using a structured approach. Analysis of personal and environmental barriers and facilitators for participation guided the choice of intervention strategies to support goal attainment. The natural environment, government policies and availability of transport were identified as the most frequent barriers to participation in leisure. Support to secure appropriate devices to enable participation was commonly required. As a group, attainment of 12 of 17 GAS goals, and progress on four more goals, was demonstrated. CONCLUSIONS: The intervention model was applicable and practical to use in a community therapy setting and the majority of the participation goals set were achieved. IMPLICATIONS FOR REHABILITATION: This ICF-based intervention model was applicable and practical to use in a community therapy setting. The majority of the adolescent's leisure participation goals were achieved following engagement in the multi-strategy intervention. Adolescents with sufficient communication skills (CFCS Levels I-III) benefited from a group-based intervention in addition to individualised support.
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