Background: Although the transtheoretical model (TTM) is good at detecting motivation to alter behavior, one of the frequently cited methodological problems is related to the validity of the staging instruments. Few studies have examined the ability of the TTM constructs (decisional balance, self-efficacy, and processes of change) to predict the stages of change in healthy populations, and it has never been applied in this manner among individuals living with HIV/AIDS.
Purpose: To determine the accuracy of the TTM constructs to predict the stages of change for exercise behavior in individuals living with HIV/AIDS.
Methods: Cross-sectional self-report data were collected from 208 individuals living with HIV/AIDS.
Results: Predictive discriminant analysis classified individuals into the correct stages 42% of the time, which was 25% better than chance (Z = 6.79, P < 0.05). Precontemplation was predicted 48% of the time, contemplation 25% of the time, preparation 70% of the time, and maintenance 63% of the time. These four stages were all predicted better than chance alone; however, no one was accurately predicted in the action stage.
Conclusions: This was one of the first studies to examine the TTM in individuals living with HIV/AIDS, and the validity of the staging measure among individuals living with HIV/AIDS was supported. However, more research is needed to assess whether the action stage is appropriate for exercise behavior in this population segment.