Skip to main content

Research Repository

Advanced Search

Process Evaluation of Project FFAB (Fun Fast Activity Blasts): A Multi-Activity School-Based High-Intensity Interval Training Intervention

Weston, Kathryn L.; Innerd, Alison; Azevedo, Liane B.; Bock, Susan; Batterham, Alan M.

Process Evaluation of Project FFAB (Fun Fast Activity Blasts): A Multi-Activity School-Based High-Intensity Interval Training Intervention Thumbnail


Kathryn L. Weston

Alison Innerd

Liane B. Azevedo

Alan M. Batterham


Introduction: Over the last decade, research into the impact of school-based high-intensity interval training (HIIT) on young people's health has markedly increased. Despite this, most authors have focused on the outcomes of their intervention, rather than the process of how the study was conducted. The aim of our study, therefore, was to conduct a mixed methods process evaluation of Project FFAB (Fun Fast Activity Blasts), a school-based HIIT intervention for adolescents. The objectives were to explore study recruitment, reach, intervention dose, fidelity, participants' experiences, context, and future implementation. Methods: Recruitment was assessed by comparing the number of students who received study information, to those who provided consent. Reach was described as the number of participants who completed the intervention. Dose was reported via the number of HIIT sessions delivered, total exercise time commitment, HIIT exercise time, and session attendance. Post-intervention focus groups were conducted with intervention participants (n = 33; aged 14.1 ± 0.3 years; mean ± standard deviation). These discussions explored aspects of intervention fidelity (extent that the intervention was delivered as intended); participants' experiences of the HIIT sessions; context (exploration of the nuances of school-based HIIT); and ideas for future implementation. Results: Recruitment, reach, and dose data indicate that Project FFAB was largely delivered as planned. Focus group data identified a mismatch between perceived vs. prescribed work: rest ratio for the multi-activity HIIT drills. Generally, the HIIT drills were well-received; participants often reported they were fun to complete, and the use of heart rate monitors was helpful for interpreting exercise intensity. Some participants stated that greater variety in the HIIT drills would be preferable. The timing and structure of the HIIT sessions that took place outside of physical education lessons received mixed responses. Conclusion: Collectively, our study supports the use of school-based HIIT and provides valuable insights into how such interventions can be implemented. Project FFAB could be modified to account for individuals' preferences on when the exercise sessions took place. In addition, a wider range of activities could be included, and the prescribed work: rest ratio of the HIIT drills could be better communicated.


Weston, K. L., Innerd, A., Azevedo, L. B., Bock, S., & Batterham, A. M. (2021). Process Evaluation of Project FFAB (Fun Fast Activity Blasts): A Multi-Activity School-Based High-Intensity Interval Training Intervention. Frontiers in Sports and Active Living, 3, Article 737900.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Aug 23, 2021
Online Publication Date Sep 20, 2021
Publication Date 2021
Deposit Date Jan 19, 2022
Publicly Available Date Jan 19, 2022
Journal Frontiers in Sports and Active Living
Publisher Frontiers Media
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 3
Article Number 737900
Public URL


Published Journal Article (358 Kb)

Publisher Licence URL

Copyright Statement
© 2021 Weston, Innerd, Azevedo, Bock and Batterham. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

You might also like

Downloadable Citations