Can a health coaching intervention delivered during pregnancy help prevent excessive gestational weight gain?

Briony Hill, Helen Skouteris, Matthew Fuller-Tyszkiewicz, Skye McPhie

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8 Citations (Scopus)


This study evaluated: (1) the efficacy of a health coaching (HC) intervention designed to prevent excessive gestational weight gain (GWG); and (2) whether there were improved psychological, motivational, and behavioural outcomes for women in the HC intervention compared to a “usual care” control group. In this quasi-experimental study, 267 pregnant women ≤18 weeks gestation were recruited between August 2011 and June 2013 from two hospital antenatal clinics in Melbourne, Australia. Intervention women received four individual HC and two group HC/educational sessions informed by theories of behaviour change. Women completed questionnaires assessing psychological, motivational and behavioural outcomes at 16–18 (baseline) and 33 (post-intervention) weeks gestation. Weight measures were collected. Compared to usual care, the intervention did not limit GWG or prevent excessive GWG. However, HC women reported greater use of active coping skills post-intervention. Despite lack of success of the HC intervention, given the risks associated with excessive weight gain in pregnancy, health professionals should continue to recommend appropriate GWG.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)793-803
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Behavioral Medicine
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Behavioural medicine
  • Gestational weight gain
  • Health behaviour change
  • Health coaching
  • Intervention studies
  • Motivation

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