Background: Behaviour change techniques (BCTs) can be employed to support a healthy lifestyle for people with intellectual disabilities. The aim of this study is to determine whether and which BCTs are used by direct support professionals (DSPs) for supporting healthy lifestyle behaviour of people with moderate to profound intellectual disabilities. Method: Direct support professionals (n = 18) were observed in their daily work using audio-visual recordings. To code BCTs, the Coventry Aberdeen London Refined (CALO-RE-NL) taxonomy was employed. Results: Direct support professionals used 33 BCTs out of 42. The most used BCTs were as follows: ‘feedback on performance’, ‘instructions on how to perform the behaviour’, ‘doing together’, ‘rewards on successful behaviour’, ‘reward effort towards behaviour’, ‘DSP changes environment’, ‘graded tasks’, ‘prompt practice’ and ‘model/demonstrate behaviour’. Conclusions: Although a variety of BCTs is used by DSPs in their support of people with moderate to profound intellectual disabilities when facilitating healthy lifestyle behaviour, they rely on nine of them.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1048-1056
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2021


  • behavior change techniques
  • intellectual disabilities


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