Behavior Change Models appropriate to Physiotherapy Practice

Dr. Noa Ben Ami
Department of Physical Therapy, School of Health Sciences, Ariel University


Physiotherapists are expected to promote their patients' health by encouraging increased physical activity, cessation of smoking and the adoption of a healthy lifestyle.

Objective: To describe three behavioral change models that were proven to be effective in changing behavior and are suitable to be integrated in physiotherapy practice. The following models were used successfully. Included in this investigation are: the Transtheoretical Model, Motivational Interviewing, and the Five A's Technique.

Health behavioral Models: We described in our article three behavioral models. The Transtheoretical Model - assumes that the altering of health behaviors occurs in stages, which reflect various levels of patient motivation and perceived self-efficacy (the stages are precontemplation, contemplation, preparation, action, and maintenance). The therapist asks targeted questions designed to increase patient motivation for change, until motivation increases to the point of initiating action. the model of Motivational Interviewing recognizes that patients may be ambivalent about change, emphasizes patient's autonomy, values, and collaboration with the therapist. The technique includes agenda setting, exploration, providing information, listening and summarizing, generating options, and setting up a contractual agreement between the therapist and the patient.
The Five A’s technique (ask, advise, assess, assist, arrange) is an efficient strategy for addressing health risk behaviors, may be implemented in approximately 5-10 minutes, allowing for integration into most office visits.

Conclusion: These models have proven to be effective for the purpose of changing behaviors, and should be implemented in the practice of the physiotherapy. Physiotherapists in training, in undergraduate programs and in the clinical field, should learn about health promotion models, so that they can feel confident in their ability to help their patients change their behaviors and thus reach their goals more effectively.


Keywords: health promotion, Transtheoretical Model, Motivational Interviewing, Five A's Technique.

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