I do not smoke - I exercise: A pilot study of a new educational resource for secondary education students
Aims: The aim of this study was to examine the applicability of a smoking prevention educational resource for secondary education students named 'I do not smoke, I exercise'. The main focus of this program was the promotion of exercise as an alternative behaviour to smoking. Methods: The applicability of the intervention was assessed through questionnaires regarding: (a) attitudes towards smoking, (b) interest in information about smoking, and (c) knowledge about health consequences of smoking. Moreover, interviews were taken from the educators and the school principals. The questionnaires were completed from 210 students (101 boys and 109 girls) before the beginning, at the end of the program, and 12 months after the completion of the programme. One-way repeated measure ANOVA was performed to examine the differences between the pre-, post-, and the follow-up measures. Results: Results showed that the program succeeded in changing the students' attitudes, but the follow-up measures, 12 months later, showed that attitudes towards smoking and interest in information were relapsed to the pre-intervention levels. The only effect that was sustained was that for knowledge. The interviews also revealed positive comments about the program implementation and pointed some shortcomings. Conclusions: The program needs some modifications in order to overcome its weaknesses, have more lasting effects and to improve its applicability.