Immediate reinforcement increased duration of time riding the stationary bicycle in children with autism spectrum disorder: a pilot study

K. Nam, S. D.R. Ringenbach, T. A. Brusseau, R. D. Burns, B. B. Braden, C. D. Lee, H. L. Henderson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The necessity of promoting physical activity in individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) has been emphasized for decades. One of the barriers to participate in physical activity for individuals with ASD is limited interest and motivation. Therefore, understanding the motivation to exercise in this population is important. The objective was to determine the effect of using contingent reinforcement in the form of watching a preferred DVD to increase duration of time pedalling on a stationary bicycle within their predetermined target heart rate zone (THRZ) in children with ASD. Using a crossover design, seven participants (11 2.7 years) who were diagnosed with ASD were randomly assigned to either Group A or B. Time spent pedalling on a bicycle within the THRZ was analysed using a linear mixed-effect model with Bonferroni adjustments. The results showed that the DVD intervention motivated children with ASD to exercise for more than 10 minutes in moderate to vigorous physical activity compared to when they were exercising without watching a DVD. This result is significant as number of studies have revealed that 10 minutes of exercise could bring improvements in activities of daily living such as behaviors and academic performance in school. .

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalInternational Journal of Developmental Disabilities
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2020

Keywords

  • contingent reinforcement
  • DVD intervention
  • high functioning
  • Moderate to vigorous physical activity
  • motor skills

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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