Commitment strength in motivational interviewing and movement in exercise stage of change in women

Cynthia K. Perry, Susan W. Butterworth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Motivational interviewing (MI) increasingly is used in behavior change counseling. We explored whether commitment verbalized in an initial MI session predicted subsequent physical activity behavior. Data sources: As part of a 12-week walking program targeted at rural women, an initial MI session was held that was audio-recorded. We measured commitment strength during this MI session, stage of change (SOC) pre- and postintervention, and minutes of physical activity performed during the 12-week intervention for the 20 women in the intervention. Conclusions: Commitment strength was significantly correlated with SOC, and SOC was significantly correlated with physical activity behavior. However, commitment strength did not predict physical activity. Further research is needed to determine if commitment strength predicts subsequent physical activity. Implications for practice: Understanding the role of the strength of a commitment statement made during an initial MI session could assist the APN in directing follow-up MI sessions. This information could be useful in improving the cost effectiveness and efficiency of conducting MI.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)509-514
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Behavior change
  • Motivational interviewing
  • Physical activity
  • Rural women
  • Stage of change

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)


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