Health promotion for people with Intellectual disabilities with a focus on physical activity.

Online event:

Health promotion for people with Intellectual disabilities with a focus on physical activity.

As an alternative to the cancelled workshop during the International Week at Bielefeld University of Applied Sciences in May this year, we were very delighted to invite to the online event below and were proud to have gained high-profile speakers for this event. The event has taken place on 16th June 2020 via the online-videomeeting-tool zoom.

The videos of the presentations can now be found on this site. Just click on the title of the presentation, a box will open with a link to the video. The 1st and 2nd presentation is also available as a pdf file (see download-box on the left side).

Furthermore there is a report about the event in the FH internal newspaper "Flurfunk" (see download-box).

The next international week in Bielefeld location takes place annualy and is organized by the International Office of the Bielefeld University of Applied Sciences.

This event belongs to the project förges 3 (description in english language).


Background (brief desription)

Today, low levels of physical activity are a great health problem for society as a whole. According to the World Health Organization physical inactivity is associated with an increased risk for chronic diseases and as an important risk factor for global mortality (6% of deaths globally). Compared to the general population chronic diseases occur more frequently and often earlier in lifetime in people with intellectual difficulties (PWID). For PWID there are many challenges in social activities and they have a different access to health-related resources than the general population. A positive effect of physical activity on prevention and health preservation has been proven. To our knowledge interventions to promote physical activity in everyday life for people with intellectual disabilities are rare.

In this context we would like to provide background information about physical activity, physical activity -related health competences, at interventions for people with intellectual disability and a closer look at a complex intervention for health promotion including physical activity and nutrition for people with intellectual disability. The aim is to show and discuss how health literacy and healthy behaviors can be improved by increasing knowledge, preferences, skills and self-efficacy.

 Further details of the individual presentations can be found in the timeline.
(With a click on the title of the presentation).
An introduction of the speakers can be found at the end of this website.



10:25    Welcoming (5 Minutes)
Prof. Ä.-D. Latteck, Bielefeld University of Applied Sciences, Germany

Greetings and background of this event

10:30    The Status of physical activity (worldwide and in Germany) and the concept of physical activity related health competences
incl. 5 minutes for discussion with the speaker
Dr. (cand.) J. Carl,
Friedrich-Alexander-University, Erlangen-Nürnberg, Germany

There is no doubt that physical activity has the potential to make a substantial contribution to individual’s health. Against this background, international and national agencies are interested in disseminating comprehensive recommendations regarding the minimum level of physical activity. In the first part of this talk, recent epidemiologic data are presented that objectively determine the percentage of people meeting these recommendations. In the second part of the talk, a competence framework is outlined that bundles the different person-related requirements for a healthy, physically active lifestyle. Finally, the role of these competencies are exemplified by studies in apprentices and people with multiple sclerosis.

Link to the video-presentation

10:50    An overview about interventions to promote physical activity in people with intellectual disability. Results from a literature review.
incl. 5 minutes for discussion with the speaker
Dr. Dirk Bruland, Bielefeld University of Applied Sciences, Germany
 In order to get an overview of the state of the art of research on the promotion of physical activity of people with intellectual disabilities, a literature review was conducted in 2018/2019. Twelve heterogeneous interventions were found. In these presentations characteristics of people with intellectual disabilities as well as an overview of general and specific strategies of founded interventions are given.

Link to the video-presentation

 11:10    Break

11:20    A complex Health promotion intervention for people with Intellectual disabilities
45 minutes + 15 minutes for discussion with the speaker
Dr. H. Bergström, Karolinska Institutet Stockholm, Sweden

Dr. Bergström speaks about the health promoting intervention in community residences for people with intellectual disabilites (PWID) and staff in Stockholm, which includes diet and physical activity. A remarkable aspect is the extensive developmental process and the broad research, including exploring the implementation process, testing the effectiveness of the intervention as well as exploring barriers and facilitators in people with intellectual disability. For this, different participants (PWID, health ambassadors, managers) are interviewed. Based on the results of their research the intervention was adapted and the intervention will be successful conducted for several years. She also talks about her current project to evaluate an adapted version of the American Health Matters program. This intervention is a whole organization approach to promote exercises in PWID, which could be well conceivable for many countries.

Link to the video-presentation

12:20    Summarizing and concluding words

Summary of the event and farewell.

 Introduction of the speakers in alphabetical order:

Helena Bergström is a public health scientist within Region Stockholm in Sweden, working with health promotion targeting people with intellectual disabilities. She developed a health promotion intervention in community residences, focusing on diet and physical activity, and is now working on a Swedish adapation of the American intervention HealthMatters. 

Dirk Bruland do research work at the Bielefeld University of Applied Sciences since 2018 with a focus on promoting physical acitivity and health literacy in people with intellectual disability. He is project leader of the research projects “Improvement of physical activity and related health literacy in people with intellectual disabilities” and “Geko-MmgB: Explanatory videos to promote health literacy for people with intellectual disabilities”.

Johannes Carl is with the Department of Sport Science and Sport at Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nürnberg. His research projects adopt a multidimensional perspective on healthy, physically active lifestyles by integrating cognitive, motivational, volitional, and physical requirements. Through the lens of physical activity-related health competence, he conducted several studies in different populations, including individuals with COPD, persons with multiple sclerosis, and apprentices in nursing care and car mechatronics. In 2018, he founded a network in German-speaking countries for the promotion of research in the area of physical activity-related health competence (Netzwerk Bewegungsbezogene Gesundheitskompetenz).”

Änne-Dörte Latteck is professor for nursing science at the Bielefeld University of Applied Sciences. She led several projects with different research approaches focusing on people with intellectual disabilities. These include prevention and health promotion, health literacy, polypharmacy and the promotion of physical activity.