Open Access Study protocol

Move more for life: the protocol for a randomised efficacy trial of a tailored-print physical activity intervention for post-treatment breast cancer survivors

Camille E Short1*, Erica L James1, Afaf Girgis2, Patrick Mcelduff3 and Ronald C Plotnikoff4

Author Affiliations

1 School of Medicine and Public Health, Priority Research Centre for Health Behaviour, Priority Research Centre for Physical Activity and Nutrition, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, Australia

2 Ingham Institute for Applied Medical Research, South Western Sydney Clinical School, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia

3 Clinical Trials Unit, Hunter Medical Research Institute, School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, Australia

4 School of Education, Priority Research Centre for Physical Activity and Nutrition, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, Australia

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BMC Cancer 2012, 12:172  doi:10.1186/1471-2407-12-172

Published: 8 May 2012



Due to early detection and advances in treatment, the number of women surviving breast cancer is increasing. Whilst there are many positive aspects of improved survival, breast cancer survival is associated with many long-term health and psychosocial sequelae. Engaging in regular physical activity post-diagnosis can reduce this burden. Despite this evidence, the majority of breast cancer survivors do not engage in regular physical activity. The challenge is to provide breast cancer survivors with appealing and effective physical activity support in a sustainable and cost-effective way. This article describes the protocol for the Move More for Life Study, which aims to assess the relative efficacy of two promising theory-based, print interventions designed to promote regular physical activity amongst breast cancer survivors.

Method and design

Breast cancer survivors were recruited from across Australia. Participants will be randomised into one of three groups: (1) A tailored-print intervention group, (2) a targeted-print intervention group, or (3) a standard recommendation control group. Participants in the tailored-print intervention group will receive 3 tailored newsletters in the mail over a three month period. Participants in the targeted-print group will receive a previously developed physical activity guidebook designed specifically for breast cancer survivors immediately after baseline. Participants in the standard recommendation control will receive a brochure detailing the physical activity guidelines for Australian adults. All participants will be assessed at baseline, and at 4 and 10 months post-baseline. Intervention efficacy for changing the primary outcomes (mins/wk aerobic physical activity; sessions/exercises per week resistance physical activity) and secondary outcomes (steps per day, health-related quality life, compliance with physical activity guidelines, fatigue) will be assessed. Mediation and moderation analyses will also be conducted.


Given the growing number of cancer survivors, distance-based behaviour change programs addressing physical activity have the potential to make a significant public health impact.

Trial registration

Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (ANZCTR) identifier: ACTRN12611001061921