Lifestyle physical activity in manual wheelchair users - an overlooked public health opportunity

Rachel E Cowan, Stephanie L Silveira, Tina Helle, Uffe Læssøe, Kirstine Rosenbeck Gøeg, Jette Bangshaab, Robert W Motl

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Public health guidelines and health promotion efforts have traditionally focused on weekly accumulation of moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) via structured exercise. There has been a recent paradigm shift towards the organic incorporation of MVPA in daily leisure and non-leisure time, termed "Lifestyle Physical Activity" (LPA). However, this paradigm shift and the underlying research has neglected manual wheelchair users (MWCUs) with spinal cord injury (SCI), who could benefit from LPA. This article argues for expanding the LPA paradigm shift into research and health promotion efforts involving MWCUs with SCI. We suggest a working definition of LPA for MWCUs and candidate metrics for quantifying LPA. This is followed by brief overviews of LPA correlates, outcomes/consequences, and interventions and the need for theory based approaches to study these domains. We lastly suggest an approach for mitigating potential negative outcomes of increased LPA in MWCUs and suggest a research agenda.

Original languageEnglish
JournalSpinal Cord
Pages (from-to)190-192
Number of pages3
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2022


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