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Hockey Fans in Training: A Pilot Pragmatic Randomized Controlled Trial.

Petrella, Robert J.; Gill, Dawn P.; Zou, Guangyong; De Cruz, Ashleigh; Riggin, Brendan; Bartol, Cassandra; Danylchuk, Karen; Hunt, Kate; Wyke, Sally; Gray, Cindy M.; Bunn, Christopher; Zwarenstein, Merrick
Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: Post Acceptance: July 17, 2017
doi: 10.1249/MSS.0000000000001380
Original Investigation: PDF Only

Introduction: Hockey Fans in Training (Hockey FIT) is a gender-sensitized weight loss and healthy lifestyle program. We investigated: 1) feasibility of recruiting and retaining overweight and obese men into a pilot pragmatic randomized controlled trial; and 2) potential for Hockey FIT to lead to weight loss and improvements in other outcomes at 12 weeks and 12 months.

Methods: Male fans of 2 ice hockey teams (35-65 years; body-mass index >=28 kg/m2) located in Ontario (Canada) were randomized to intervention (Hockey FIT) or comparator (Wait-list Control). Hockey FIT includes a 12-week active phase (weekly, coach-led group meetings including provision of dietary information, practice of behaviour change techniques, and safe exercise sessions plus incremental pedometer walking) and a 40-week minimally-supported phase (smartphone app for sustaining physical activity; private online social network; standardized emails; booster session/reunion). Measurement at baseline and 12 weeks (both groups), and 12 months (intervention group only), included clinical outcomes (e.g., weight) and self-reported physical activity, diet, self-rated health.

Results: Eighty men were recruited in 4 weeks; trial retention was >80% at 12 weeks and >75% at 12 months. At 12 weeks, the intervention group lost 3.6 (95% CI: -5.26, -1.90) kg more than the comparator (p<0.001) and maintained this weight loss to 12 months. The intervention group also demonstrated greater improvements in other clinical measures, physical activity, diet and self-rated health at 12 weeks; most sustained to 12 months.

Conclusion: Results suggest feasible recruitment/retention of overweight and obese men in the Hockey FIT program. Results provide evidence for the potential effectiveness of Hockey FIT for weight loss and improved health in at-risk men and thus, evidence to proceed with a definitive trial.

(C) 2017 American College of Sports Medicine