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Implementation of the spinal cord injury exercise guidelines in the hospital and community settings: Protocol for a type II hybrid trial

Jasmin K. Ma, Kristen Walden, Christopher B. McBride, Catherine Le Cornu Levett, Regina Colistro, Tova Plashkes, Teri Thorson, Hattie Shu & Kathleen A. Martin Ginis

Spinal Cord vol. 60, pp. 53-57 (2022).


Study design

Type II hybrid effectiveness-implementation trial protocol.


To (1) evaluate the implementation of coordinated physical activity (PA) coaching delivered by physiotherapists and spinal cord injury (SCI) peers during the transition from in-hospital care to living in a community (implementation objective) and (2) assess the effect of coaching on PA behaviour and psychosocial predictors among people with SCI (effectiveness objective).


Rehabilitation hospital and home/community settings in British Columbia, Canada.


Implementation objective: PA coaches (physiotherapists and SCI peers) receive an implementation intervention including training, monitoring, feedback, and champion support. A Theoretical Domains Framework-based questionnaire is collected at baseline, post-training, 2, and 6 months follow-up and semi-structured interviews conducted at 6 months. Effectiveness objective: Using a quasi-experimental design, 55 adults with SCI are allocated to intervention (PA coaching, n = 30) or control (usual care, n = 25) groups. Participants in the intervention group are referred by physiotherapists to receive 11 SCI peer-delivered PA coaching sessions in the community. Control participants received usual care. Questionnaires assessing PA behaviour and psychosocial predictors are administered at baseline, 2-months, 6-months, and 1-year. Semi-structured interviews are conducted to assess intervention satisfaction at 6 months. Analyses include one-way (implementation objective) and two-way (effectiveness objective) repeated measures ANCOVAs for questionnaire-reported outcomes and thematic content analysis for interview data. Data are summarised using the reach effectiveness adoption implementation maintenance (RE-AIM) framework.

Ethics and dissemination

The University of British Columbia Clinical Research Ethics Board approved the protocol (#H19-02694), registration NCT04493606. Documentation of the adoption process will inform implementation in future sites.

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