Author(s): Ludvigsson J, Larsson Y, Svensson PG
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Abstract Contrary to our recommendations many juvenile diabetics are inactive and rather negative to physical exercise. We have tried to estimate the attitudes towards and motivation for regular physical exercise among juvenile diabetics by interviewing, giving questionnaires to and using a special attitude test. Different groups have been studied, the largest including 138 diabetics aged 1-21 years with age at onset between 1-16 years (7.3 +/- 4.0) and duration of diabetes 1-17 years (5.7 +/- 3.6). The results are somewhat divergent comparing different patient groups and when using different methods. Generally teenagers seem to be somewhat more negative. According to direct questions in questionnaires or interviews most patients seem to know that physical exercise is important and very few dislike this part of the treatment. However, the special attitude test reveals more mixed feelings. Many patients mean that is easy to be theoretically positive, but quite another thing to really exercise regularly. Too often physical exercise becomes a medicine instead of a natural pleasant habit. It is important that the hospital staff inform the patients without nagging, and then support and stimulate the patients, and give them adequate responsibility.
This article was published in Acta Paediatr Scand Suppl
and referenced in Journal of Diabetes & Metabolism