Getting more people on the stairs: the impact of a new message format

Jaqueline Kerr, Francis Eves, Douglas Carroll

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

44 Citations (Scopus)


Previous research has found that poster prompts are associated with significant increases in stair use. The present study examined the use of messages on the stair risers, as an alternative to posters, to encourage stair climbing. Observers monitored shoppers' stair and escalator use over a 2-week baseline and 6-week intervention period. The prevalence of stair use increased from a baseline value of 8.1 percent to 18.3 percent when the motivating messages were in place. This increase is greater than that found in studies that used poster prompts in shopping centre venues. The apparent advantage of stair-riser banners is discussed in terms of their visibility and attractiveness, as well as their capacity to present multiple messages likely to appeal to a broader constituency. It is concluded that promoters of physical activity should use colourful, tailored stair-riser banners, rather than posters, to encourage stair climbing.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)495-500
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Health Psychology
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2001


  • stair climbing
  • health communication
  • exercise promotion


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