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Hockey Fans in Training: A Pilot Pragmatic Randomized Controlled Trial

PETRELLA, ROBERT J.1,2,3; GILL, DAWN P.1,2,4; ZOU, GUANGYONG5,6; DE CRUZ, ASHLEIGH1,2; RIGGIN, BRENDAN3; BARTOL, CASSANDRA1,2; DANYLCHUK, KAREN3; HUNT, KATE7; WYKE, SALLY8; GRAY, CINDY M.8; BUNN, CHRISTOPHER8; ZWARENSTEIN, MERRICK1,2,5

Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: December 2017 - Volume 49 - Issue 12 - p 2506–2516
doi: 10.1249/MSS.0000000000001380
Applied Sciences

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 wk and 12 months.

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

Results Eighty men were recruited in 4 wk; trial retention was >80% at 12 wk and >75% at 12 months. At 12 wk, the intervention group lost 3.6 kg (95% confidence interval, −5.26 to −1.90 kg) more than the comparator group (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 wk; most sustained to 12 months.

Conclusions 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.

1Centre for Studies in Family Medicine, Department of Family Medicine, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, Western University, London, Ontario, CANADA; 2Lawson Health Research Institute, London, Ontario, CANADA; 3School of Kinesiology, Faculty of Health Sciences, Western University, London, Ontario, CANADA; 4School of Health Studies, Faculty of Health Sciences, Western University, London, Ontario, CANADA; 5Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, Western University, London, Ontario, CANADA; 6Robarts Clinical Trials, Robarts Research Institute, Western University, London, Ontario, CANADA; 7MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit, Institute of Health and Wellbeing, College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UNITED KINGDOM; and 8Institute of Health and Wellbeing, College of Social Sciences, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UNITED KINGDOM

Address for correspondence: Robert J. Petrella, M.D., Ph.D., Centre for Studies in Family Medicine, Western Centre for Public Health and Family Medicine, Western University, 2nd Floor, 1465 Richmond St., London, ON, Canada N6G 2M1; E-mail: petrella@uwo.ca.

Submitted for publication March 2017.

Accepted for publication July 2017.

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© 2017 American College of Sports Medicine