Training the trainer: User perceptions of the Active Living Leaders training program for spinal cord injury


Purpose: The Active Living Leaders Training Program (ALLTP) for Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) is an online program designed to equip individuals with the necessary knowledge and skills to mentor those with SCI to increase their physical activity. The purpose of this study was to examine users’ perceptions of the utility and presentation of material and its impact on their self-efficacy to discuss physical activity with individuals with SCI. Methods: Ten individuals drawn from a community-based exercise program for people with mobility impairments [four adults with SCI (75% male,Age range=31-60+;six trainers(50% male;Age range=20-60+)] completed the ALLTP Physical Activity Knowledge module. Participants completed a survey evaluating the content, presentation of material and their confidence to use the information on a scale from 1 (strongly disagree) to 5 (strongly agree). Means, standard deviations and correlations were calculated. Results: There were no differences between adults with SCI and trainers’ responses so respondents’ data were collapsed. Survey items assessing relevance/usefulness of content/resources were rated favourably (M=4.47;SD=0.21). Survey items assessing presentation of material were positively rated (M=3.93;SD=0.12). Post-training, respondents reported feeling  confident in their abilities to encourage adults with SCI to participate in physical activity (M=4.7;SD=0.48). Participants’ confidence was positively correlated with perceptions that the information was clear/stimulating (r=0.68;p=0.031) and informative (r=0.73;p=0.027). Discussion: Results indicate positive user perceptions of the utility and presentation of material of the ALLTP Physical Activity Knowledge module. Correlational results suggest that the material and its presentation may contribute to individuals feeling confident to discuss physical activity with others. Participants’ high level of confidence post-training indicates that they may be more likely to use the new information as a mentor. These preliminary results suggest the ALLTP Physical Activity Knowledge module is appropriate for its target audience and may provide individuals with the confidence to be effective peer mentors.