How are we doing ?

How are we doing ?

14th February 2020

For anyone working in the area of childhood weight management being confident in supporting children, young people and their families to make positive lifestyle changes is essential. Since its inception in 2018 AppleTree Healthy Lifestyle Consultancy has been delivering the training course 'Using behavioural change tools in childhood obesity'. This is a course that has been developed from years of experience, study and qualitative research in this field. 

This course has been delivered 7 times in Scotland, England and Southern Ireland over a number of years. To date 74 people have participated, with the furthest anyone has  travelled is from Bermuda. This week I presented the results of the course evaluation at the BDA Obesity Specialist Group's conference in Birmingham. This blog is an expansion of that short presentation.

The use of behavioural  change tools in childhood obesity is a 2-day skills-based training course and yes that does mean that there is some role play! The main tools that we look at and practice are :-

  • Assessing readiness to change
  • Goal setting
  • Problem solving
  • Establishing rapport
  • Supporting positive parenting.

The use of role play in the training is to give participants a safe environment to practice these tools and to try out different ways of saying things, getting feedback while knowing that no one will be offended or hurt. 

Due to the nature of this work 71 out the 74 participants have been dietitians, with 69 from a health, 1 from public health and 4 from an education background. Experience in childhood obesity has ranged from 2 people with no experience to 41 with three or more years. At the end of the course 96.8% of participants gave this course an excellent or very good rating. 81% said it was very useful to them with 100% saying it met all or most of their needs. 98.4% gave our trainer an excellent or very good rating.

To evaluate the changes in confidence in using the behavioural change tools the participants complete a pre and post training questionnaire. They note their confidence using a 1-5 Likert scale, 5 being the highest. When presenting the results, we note the change in percentage of participants who give a 4/5 score. The graph below shows the changes in confidence from pre-training to after at the 4/5 Likert score. As you can see for nearly all the tools there is a substantial increase in participants' confidence. 

What people say -

'Such a wealth of knowledge. Fantastic at developing a safe environment.' Participant, Gatwick 2019

'I was delighted when I saw that the course was on offer and it exceeded my expectations - Thank you.' Participant, Gatwick 2019

'Great practical 2 day workshop. Very enjoyable.' Participant, Edinburgh 2018

'Really enjoyable course, I feel I learnt a lot. Will take back to the job and improve the service.' Participant, Manchester 2011.

If you would like to ask any questions about this training or book on the Gatwick October 2020 course or indeed wish us to deliver to your department then contact us.

Dr Laura Stewart

February 2020