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The Use of Point-of-Decision Prompts to Increase Stair Climbing in Singapore

Physical Activity Center of Excellence, Health Promotion Board, 3 Second Hospital Ave, S168937, Singapore
Center for Quantitative Medicine, Office of Clinical Science, Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School, 8 College Road, S169857, Singapore
Department of Statistics and Applied Probability, National University of Singapore, S169857, Singapore
Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health, National University of Singapore, 16 Medical Drive, S117597, Singapore
Institute for Social Medicine, Epidemiology and Health Economics–Charité University Medical Center Berlin, 10117, Berlin, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(1), 210-218;
Received: 3 December 2012 / Revised: 31 December 2012 / Accepted: 4 January 2013 / Published: 7 January 2013
Physical inactivity is a significant contributor to worldwide mortality and morbidity associated with non-communicable diseases. An excellent avenue to incorporate lifestyle physical activity into regular routine is to encourage the use of stairs during daily commutes. We evaluated the effectiveness of point-of-decision prompts (PODPs) in promoting the use of stairs instead of the escalators in a Singapore Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) station. We measured the number of stair climbers before the PODPs were put up, during the 4 weeks that they were in use, and 2 weeks after they were removed. Measurements at a no intervention control site were additionally taken. The use of stair-riser banners was associated with an increase in the number of people using the stairs by a factor of 1.49 (95% CI 1.34–1.64). After the banners were removed, the number of stair climbers at the experimental station dropped to slightly below baseline levels. The Singapore MRT serves a diverse multi-ethnic population with an average daily ridership of over 2 million and 88 stations island-wide. An increase of physical activity among these MRT commuters would have a large impact at the population level. Our findings can be translated into part of the national strategy to encourage an active lifestyle in Singaporeans. View Full-Text
Keywords: point-of-decision prompts; physical activity; health promotion; stairs; Asia point-of-decision prompts; physical activity; health promotion; stairs; Asia
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Sloan, R.A.; Haaland, B.A.; Leung, C.; Müller-Riemenschneider, F. The Use of Point-of-Decision Prompts to Increase Stair Climbing in Singapore. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10, 210-218.

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