Adapted Physical Activity Program

The Adapted Physical Activity Program (APAP) is an evidence-based physical activity promotion service for people with chronic and complex health conditions.

Many people with chronic or complex conditions will often face significant barriers to being physically active - uncertainty about how to start, inaccessible facilities and special medical concerns can all reduce your motivation and prevent action.

This home and community-based service aims to empower clients to improve their functional outcomes, mental health and/or social re-entry by giving them the skills, knowledge and confidence needed to commence and maintain a physically active lifestyle long after our visits have stopped.

The service is proudly supported by Suncorp Insurance.

Who is APAP for?

APAP is for people who would like to improve their health and activity levels through a fun and supportive program. We don't  build everything we do around your disability. Instead we help you to explore your potential and work out ways to optimise your current health and prevent sickness and poor health in the future.  

We put considerable time and energy into identifying activities that each individual will enjoy so you will want to stay active (rather than just giving you exercise programs that we think are good but which you don't enjoy and may never do).

We provide services in the greater Brisbane area and cater for people with a wide range of health conditions including, but not limited to:

  • PTSD
  • Spinal Cord Injury
  • Brain Injury
  • Severe Mental Health Conditions
  • Chronic Pain
  • Stroke
  • Amputations
  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Spina Bifida
  • Parkinsons Disease
  • Complicated Orthopaedic Injury
  • Epilepsy
  • Autism Spectrum Disorders
  • Down Syndrome
  • Cystic Fibrosis
  • Diabetes Mellitus

What programs do you offer?

Traditional APAP service

This program is ideal for clients who are chronically inactive and have complex needs such as those who have had a catastrophic injury (e.g., spinal cord injury, traumatic brain injury), have multiple injuries/conditions, experience chronic pain, have PTSD, a severe mental health condition or very low motivation.

Includes: Initial assessment (Physical capacity, social support, readiness to change and home/community environment assessment), treatment recommendations,9face to face sessions including reassessment on final, remote client support (phone calls, email, text) as well as progress and final reports.

Condensed program

This program is designed to suit clients who are ready to incorporate activity into their daily lives or have been through an intensive facility based program but require an extension to a home and community based program for long term maintenance. This program is ideal to prepare a client for a return to work/activities of daily living. 

Includes: Initial assessment (Physical capacity, social support, readiness to change and home/community environment assessment), treatment recommendations, 4 x face to face sessions including reassessment on final session, remote client support (phone calls, email, text) and a final report.

Comprehensive assessment and recommendations

This option is available for case managers who would like an assessment and recommendations for their client to determine which program their client would be most suitable for.  This option is also suitable for somebody who is motivated to commence activity but would like direction on how and where and to start.

Includes: Physical capacity, social support, readiness to change and home/community environment assessment and treatment recommendations

Tailored program option

Contact us to discuss your requirements and we will work out the best combination of assessment, home visits and reporting for you and your client. This option also provides the opportunity for clients to receive one off sessions or to participate in sessions on a session by session basis.

Clients of ALL programs will recieve:

  • face-to-face sessions delivered by an Accredited Exercise Physiologist in a home or surrounding community (we come to you!)
  • a comprehensive initial assessment of themselves and their home/community environment
  • individualised exercise program and/or physical activity routine
  • all support materials (e.g. program cards, instruction videos, activity diaries, reminder notices etc)
  • follow-up phone calls/e-mail/text and other between-session support
  • specific skills and knowledge that will help clients get active and stay active including goal-setting, monitoring progress, time-management and building social support
  • assistance finding and accessing community services (e.g., finding programs, strategies for pool access, joining sports clubs)  

Why is physical activity important?

People with significant impairments experience a range of activity limitations and participation restrictions. Physical inactivity compounds theses effects because it results in:

  • reduced Cardiorespiratory fitness
  • decreased muscular strength
  • increased body fat

Evidence indicates these changes increase the physical strain associated with activites of daily living, and this can impact negatively upon independence, return to work plans and other key domains of social interaction and participation.

Participation in regular physical activity has been shown to improve:

  • independence and functional capability 
  • decrease hospital adminssion rates
  • positively impact mental health
  • prevent or ameliorate certain co-morbidities
  • increase social contact and social re-entry.

Physical Activity Facts

Fact # 1: BEING INACTIVE HAS SERIOUS CONSEQUENCES

Increased disease risk: People who are inactive have an increased risk of diseases of inactivity such as:

  • Heart disease  
  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Depression
  • some cancers

Decreased fitness and functioning: People who are inactive tend to have decreased strength and flexibility, lower fitness and higher body fat.

Fact # 2: PEOPLE WITH A DISABILITY ARE AMONG THE MOST PHYSICALLY INACTIVE MEMBERS OF SOCIETY

People with a disability are 50% more likely to be physically inactive than the general population and therefore they:

  • are more prone to developing the diseases of inactivity;
  • find physical movement more stressful, which can negatively impact independence, return to work and social interaction.

Fact # 3: EVEN SMALL INCREASES IN ACTIVITY ARE BENEFICIAL

If you are very inactive at the moment, even small increases (10 minutes per day) can lead to benefits you will really notice.

Fact # 4: APAP CAN HELP YOU!

APAP has been helping individuals to find enjoyable and sustainable ways to improve their health wellbeing and increase physical activity since 1997. Research shows our methods works. We can help you too!

Frequently Asked Questions

What sort of activities would I do?

We can develop home, pool or gym based exercise programs if that's what you want, but there are lots of other ways you can be active that can be very beneficial for your health, including:

• Gardening    • Fishing    • Lawn Bowls    • Dance     • Walking     •  Shopping     • Billiards     • Boxing  

 .... The list is endless!!

I've never done exercise, will I be able to do it?

Yes, we tailor the program to your ability. Even if you are currently very inactive small increases in your activity levels can lead to benefits that you will really notice!

I have a severe disability, is it still suitable for me?

Yes, we are able to adapt activities and programs to help you explore your potential and work out ways to optimise your current health as well as prevent sickness and poor health in the future.

How long does the program go for?

The 10 session program will run over a period of approximately 3 months. Initially, we arrange appointments weekly, then as you develop your skills we start to extend the time between session to allow you to be self-sufficient.

Where do I go to participate in the program?

We come to you. We can develop programs that you can complete at home or source local facilities that are convenient for you to get to.

What does it cost?

APAP has a cost recovery fee structure - the fee is set so that we can cover the cost of delivering this highly individualised and specialised service to people in their homes, regardless of which part of Brisbane they live in. 

Please contact us for a quote*

Many individuals who wish to participate in APAP may be eligible to receive funding that will reduce the cost of the program.

Funding options may include:

  • Medicare benefits scheme                     
  • Private health insurance
  • WorkCover Queensland 
  • Motor accident Insurance providers
  • Department of Veterans Affairs
  • Department of Communities
  • Disability services Queensland
  • Commonwealth rehabilitation services

*Prices do not include entry/membership costs for sporting and recreational activities.  All programs will include an additional travel cost from the University of Qld, St Lucia to the client at 0.76c/km. (standard UQ mileage rate).

How can I enrol?

Please contact us for a program quote / referral form to get started.

For further information, please contact Melinda Fenning (Program Coordinator)

T: 0437 526 899

E: apap@uq.edu.au

Adapted Physical Activity Program (APAP)
School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences
The University of Queensland
Brisbane QLD 4072