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Open access

Meera Sreedhara, Karin Valentine Goins, Christine Frisard, Milagros C. Rosal and Stephenie C. Lemon

Background: Local health departments (LHDs) are increasingly involved in Community Health Improvement Plans (CHIPs), a collaborative planning process that represents an opportunity for prioritizing physical activity. We determined the proportion of LHDs reporting active transportation strategies in CHIPs and associations between LHD characteristics and such strategies. Methods: A national probability survey of US LHDs (<500,000 residents; 30.2% response rate) was conducted in 2017 (n = 162). LHDs reported the inclusion of 8 active transportation strategies in a CHIP. We calculated the proportion of LHDs reporting each strategy. Multivariate logistic regression models determined the associations between LHD characteristics and inclusion of strategies in a CHIP. Inverse probability weights were applied for each stratum. Results: 45.6% of US LHDs reported participating in a CHIP with ≥1 active transportation strategy. Proportions for specific strategies ranged from 22.3% (Safe Routes to School) to 4.1% (Transit-Oriented Development). Achieving national accreditation (odds ratio [OR] = 3.67; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.11–12.05), pursuing accreditation (OR = 3.40; 95% CI, 1.25–9.22), using credible resources (OR = 5.25; 95% CI, 1.77–15.56), and collaborating on a Community Health Assessment (OR = 4.48; 95% CI, 1.23–16.29) were associated with including a strategy in a CHIP after adjusting for covariates. Conclusions: CHIPs are untapped tools, but national accreditation, using credible resources, and Community Health Assessment collaboration may support strategic planning efforts to improve physical activity.

Open access

Natalie M. Golaszewski and John B. Bartholomew

Research suggests 5 forms of social support: companionship, emotional, informational, instrumental, and validation. Despite this, existing measures of social support for physical activity are limited to emotional, companionship, and instrumental support. The purpose was to develop the Physical Activity and Social Support Scale (PASSS) with subscales that reflected all 5 forms. Participants (N = 506, mean age = 34.3 yr) who were active at least twice per week completed a 235-item questionnaire assessing physical activity behaviors, social support for physical activity, general social support, and other psychosocial questions. Exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses were used to develop and validate the PASSS. Exploratory factor analysis supported a 5-factor, 20-item model, χ2(100) = 146.22, p < .05, root mean square error of approximation = .05. Confirmatory factor analysis indicated good fit, Satorra–Bentler χ2(143) = 199.57, p < .001, root mean square error of approximation = .04, comparative-fit index = .97, standardized root mean square residual = .06. Findings support the PASSS to measure all 5 forms for physical activity.

Open access

Dawn C. Mackey, Alexander D. Perkins, Kaitlin Hong Tai, Joanie Sims-Gould and Heather A. McKay

We conducted Men on the Move, a 12-week randomized controlled feasibility trial of a scalable, choice-based, physical activity (PA) and active transportation intervention. Participants were community-dwelling men aged 60 years and older (n = 29 intervention [INT] and n = 29 waitlist control [CON]). Trained activity coaches delivered: (a) one-on-one participant consultations to develop personal action plans for PA and active transportation, (b) monthly group-based motivational meetings, (c) weekly telephone support, (d) complimentary recreation and transit passes, and (e) pedometers and diaries for self-monitoring. Men on the Move demonstrated high rates of recruitment, retention, and intervention adherence. INT chose a variety of group-based and individual PAs and destinations for their personal action plans. At 12 weeks, INT achieved more steps, moderate–vigorous PA, and energy expenditure than CON. INT was also more likely to take transit and meet national guideline levels of PA. At 24 weeks follow-up, INT benefits were sustained for moderate–vigorous PA and energy expenditure.

Open access

Steriani Elavsky, Lenka Knapova, Adam Klocek and David Smahel

We provide a systematic review of interventions utilizing mobile technology to alter physical activity, sedentary behavior, and sleep among adults aged 50 years and older. A systematic search identified 52 relevant articles (randomized control trial [RCT], quasi-experimental, pre/post single-group design). Of 50 trials assessing physical activity, 17 out of 29 RCTs and 13 out of 21 trials assessed for pre/post changes only supported the effectiveness of mobile interventions to improve physical activity, and 9 studies (five out of 10 RCTs and all four pre/post studies) out of 14 reduced sedentary behavior. Only two of five interventions improved sleep (one out of two RCTs and one out of three pre/post studies). Text messaging was the most frequently used intervention (60% of all studies) but was usually used in combination with other components (79% of hybrid interventions included SMS, plus either web or app components). Although more high-quality RCTs are needed, there is evidence supporting the effectiveness of mHealth approaches in those aged 50 years and older.

Open access

Brigid M. Lynch, Charles E. Matthews, Katrien Wijndaele and on behalf of the Sedentary Behaviour Council of the International Society for Physical Activity and Health

Open access

Viviene A. Temple, Dawn L. Lefebvre, Stephanie C. Field, Jeff R. Crane, Beverly Smith and Patti-Jean Naylor

This study examined the influence of physical health and well-being vulnerability on participation in physical activities, and whether motor skill proficiency mediated this relationship. Kindergarten children (n = 260) completed the Test of Gross Motor Development-2 and the Children’s Assessment of Participation and Enjoyment survey. A multivariate analysis of covariance was used to compare the motor skills and participation in physical activities of children in schools classified as more or less vulnerable. We also examined whether motor skill proficiency mediated the relationship between vulnerability status and participation. Children in neighborhoods with higher vulnerability demonstrated lower motor skill proficiency and participation. Object control skill proficiency mediated the relationship between vulnerability and participation. Children from more vulnerable schools started their school career with less developed motor skills and a narrower array of recreation participation. Children in vulnerable neighborhoods need more opportunities to master object controls skills and access recreational activities. Fortunately, motor skill proficiency among children considered ‘at risk’ is amenable to improvement and intervention early in the children’s school career may have a beneficial impact on children’s physical activity at school and beyond the school environment.

Full access

Jenny H. Conviser, Amanda Schlitzer Tierney and Riley Nickols

It is estimated that 1.6 million people in the United States are currently diagnosed with an eating disorder. Eating disorders (EDs) have high rates of morbidity and mortality and remain the most severe mental illness. Unfortunately, rates of EDs and disordered eating behaviors (DEBs) among athletes appear to be increasing. In this study, authors summarize ED-related risks that pose compromises in psychological and social functioning, medical health, and overall quality of life. The importance of early detection and formal evaluation in preserving the athlete’s health, well-being and sustaining successful sport participation, and performance are highlighted. Athlete-specific factors, which challenge the ease and accuracy of ED detection and assessment, are noted. The recommended components of effective ED assessment are identified, including use of self-report measures and clinical interviews conducted by ED certified and licensed professionals. The importance of being well informed in tenets of ED awareness, prevention and supporting early detection, and referral for formal ED assessment are noted. Conclusions reflect the vital roles that both the multidisciplinary sport personnel and the sport environment/culture play in reducing the serious health risks of DEBs and EDs. Each is needed to protect an athlete’s well-being while fostering safe and successful sport participation.