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I. Roy Hunter, Ronald P. Reynolds and M. Laura Williams

The purpose of this article is to introduce practitioners involved in the provision of adapted activity service to the elaboration model of data analysis. The authors contend that the use of the elaboration model for the analysis of program evaluation data: (a) can be used by activity specialists who do not have extensive training in statistics, and (b) can increase the potential for the production of empirically based programmatic recommendations from such data.

The example presented herein involves the secondary analysis of data collected during the evaluation of a child life activity program. The original study concluded that the children studied showed less regressive behavior on nights that the child life program was offered. The findings from the secondary analysis enabled the identification of children who were: (a) more likely to experience regressive behavior, and (b) more likely to be responsive to existing child life programs. It was concluded that the use of the elaboration model significantly increased the value of recommendations which were derived from the data.

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Fuzhong Li, Peter Harmer, K. John Fisher, Junheng Xu, Kathleen Fitzgerald and Naruepon Vongjaturapat

The primary objective of this study was to provide preliminary evaluation of the feasibility, safety, and efficacy of a newly developed Tai Chi-based exercise program for older adults with Parkinson’s disease (PD). Using a one-group pretest-posttest design, 17 community-dwelling adults (mean age 71.51 years) with mild to moderate idiopathic PD (Stage I, II, or III on the Hoehn and Yahr scale) and stable medication use completed a 5-day, 90-min/day Tai Chi exercise-evaluation program. Outcome measures included face-to-face exit interviews on appropriateness and safety and physical performance (i.e., 50-ft speed walk, up-and-go, functional reach). At the end of this brief intervention, exercise adherence was 100% and the program was shown to be safe. Exit interviews indicated that the program was well received by all participants with respect to program appropriateness, participant satisfaction and enjoyment, and intentions to continue. Furthermore, a significant pretest-to-posttest change was observed at the end of the 5-day program in all three physical-performance measures (p < .05). The results of this pilot evaluation suggest that Tai Chi is an appropriate physical activity for older adults with PD and might also be useful as a therapeutic exercise modality for improving and maintaining physical function. These preliminary findings warrant further investigation.

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Maurice W. Martin, Sarah Martin and Paul Rosengard

Background:

PE2GO is a self-contained physical education (PE) program that provides classroom teachers with the tools they need to lead developmentally appropriate PE lessons. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the PE2GO pilot programs in 6 school districts across the United States.

Methods:

We used paper and pencil surveys at pre intervention (n = 114) and mid intervention (n = 94) and an electronic survey at post intervention (n = 65). In addition an electronic survey was sent to administrators at preintervention (n = 18); focus groups were conducted with teachers at mid intervention for a broader perspective. The study took place September 2004 through May 2005.

Results:

Results indicate that teachers were satisfied with the PE2GO program and the perceived effects it had on their students. Teachers reported that students increased their time engaged in physical activity (128.7−181.1 minutes per week pre-to-post intervention). Administrator support was important (ie, associated with improvement), but not always present.

Conclusion:

In conclusion, the PE2GO program holds promise for the concept of providing in-class physical activity opportunities for students.

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Trisha S. Gavin and Anita M. Myers

The article profiles older adults who join Tai Chi and line-dancing beginner classes. Enrollment, attendance, and dropout patterns of 41 classes from 8 recreation and senior centers and 4 Taoist Tai Chi societies were tracked over a full calendar year. Enrollment was highest in the fall. Average attendance over the 8- to 12-week sessions was 72% for Tai Chi and 68% for line dancing; average dropout rates were 23% and 10%, respectively. Entry surveys and exit interviews were completed by 221 and 107 participants, respectively. Older adults who join these community classes tend to be predominantly women, Caucasian, in their mid-60s, relatively healthy, and physically active. Most in Tai Chi joined for fitness and health, whereas many line dancers joined for social reasons. Although the classes were designated as beginner classes, participants varied in level of experience. Continued participation was related to expectations, past experience, and perceived ease of learning the movements.

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Rodrigo S. Reis, Pedro C. Hallal, Diana C. Parra, Isabela C. Ribeiro, Ross C. Brownson, Michael Pratt, Christine M. Hoehner and Luiz Ramos

Background:

Community programs have been suggested to be an important and promising strategy for physical activity (PA) promotion. Limited evidence is available regarding knowledge of and participation in these programs in Latin America.

Objective:

To describe participation in and knowledge of community PA programs and to explore associations with leisure-time PA in the city of Curitiba, Brazil.

Methods:

A cross sectional telephone survey was conducted among adults in Curitiba, Brazil (n = 2097). The International Physical Activity Questionnaire was used to determine levels of PA, and specific questions were used to evaluate the extent to which respondents knew about or participated in the programs conducted by the municipality. Logistic regression was used to assess the meeting of PA recommendations in leisure time based on program knowledge and participation.

Results:

Knowledge of PA programs was high (91.6%) and 5.6% of population participated in the programs. After adjusting for individual characteristics, exposure to Curitiba's PA community programs was associated with leisure-time PA (POR = 2.9, 95% CI = 2.9−3.0) and walking for leisure (POR = 2.4; 95% CI = 2.3−2.4). The associations were stronger among men than among women.

Conclusions:

Knowledge and participation in Curitiba's community PA programs were associated with meeting recommended levels of PA in leisure time.

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Whitney B. Curry, Symeon Dagkas and Marcia Wilson

Background:

The Newman’s Every Child a Sports Person (NECaSP) intervention aspires to increase sport and physical activity (PA) participation among young people in the United Kingdom. The aims of this article are to report on a summative process evaluation of the NECaSP and make recommendations for future interventions.

Methods:

Seventeen schools provided data from students aged 11 to 13 years (n = 1226), parents (n = 192), and teachers (n = 14) via direct observation and questionnaires. Means, SDs, and percentages were calculated for sociodemographic data. Qualitative data were analyzed via directed content analysis and main themes identified.

Results:

Findings indicate further administrative, educational, and financial support will help facilitate the success of the program in improving PA outcomes for young people and of other similar intervention programs globally. Data highlighted the need to engage parents to increase the likelihood of intervention success.

Conclusions:

One main strength of this study is the mixed-methods nature of the process evaluation. It is recommended that future school-based interventions that bridge sports clubs and formal curriculum provision should consider a broader approach to the delivery of programs throughout the academic year, school week, and school day. Finally, changes in the school curriculum can be successful once all parties are involved (community, school, families).

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Pamela H. Kulinna, Charles B. Corbin and Hyeonho Yu

Background: Previous research findings from Project Active Teen demonstrated the effectiveness of high school conceptual physical education (CPE) in promoting active lifestyles. Method: This study followed Project Active Teen participants 20 years after graduation from high school and 24 years after taking a CPE class. Physical activity behaviors were assessed using the same procedures as previous Project Active Teen studies. Activity patterns were compared with patterns while in high school and shortly after high school graduation. Activity patterns were also compared with a national sample of age-equivalent adults. Results: Twenty years after high school graduation, former CPE students were less likely to be inactive and more likely to be moderately active than when in high school and were less likely to be inactive and more likely to be moderately active than national sample age-equivalent peers. They were typically not more vigorously physically active than comparison groups. Conclusion: Results support the long-term effectiveness of CPE in reducing inactive behavior and promoting moderate physical activity later in life.

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Nicola Lauzon, Catherine B. Chan, Anita M. Myers and Catrine Tudor-Locke

Background:

Limited process evaluation of pedometer-based interventions has been reported.

Methods:

Feedback via focus groups (n = 38) and exit questionnaires (n = 68) was used to examine participants’ experiences in a group-based, pedometer-based physical activity (PA) program delivered in the workplace.

Results:

The pedometer was described as a useful tool for increasing awareness of PA, providing motivation and visual feedback, and encouraging conversation and support among participants and others such as family and friends. Group meetings provided motivation and social support, as did participation by coworkers. Self-selected goals, self-selected PA strategies, and recording of steps/d were also important.

Conclusions:

Given the importance of social support as a mediating variable in changing PA behavior, future pedometer-based programs might benefit from including a group-based component.

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Marcia G. Ory, Matthew Lee Smith, Luohua Jiang, Doris Howell, Shuai Chen, Jairus C. Pulczinski and Alan B. Stevens

This study examines the effectiveness of Texercise Select, a 12-week lifestyle program to improve physical functioning (as measured by gait speed) and quality of life. Baseline and 12-week follow-up assessments were collected from 220 enrollees who were older (mean = 75 years), predominantly female (85%), White (82%), and experiencing multiple comorbidities (mean = 2.4). Linear mixed-models were fitted for continuous outcome variables and GEE models with logit link function for binary outcome variables. At baseline, over 52% of participants had Timed Up-and-Go (TUG) test times of 12 s or more, which indicates below-normal performance. On average, participants showed significant reductions in TUG test scores at the postintervention (11% reduction, p < .001). Participants also showed significant improvements in general health status (p = .002), unhealthy physical days (p = .032), combined unhealthy physical and mental days (p = .006), and days limited from usual activity (p = .045). Findings suggest that performance indicators can be objectively collected and integrated into evaluation designs of community-based, activity-rich lifestyle programs.

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Jiying Ling, Lorraine B. Robbins, Fujun Wen and Wei Peng

Comprehensive evaluation of prior interventions designed to increase preschoolers’ physical activity is lacking. This systematic review aimed to examine the effect of interventions on objectively measured physical activity in children aged 2–5 years. We followed the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses statement. In May 2014, we searched PubMed, CINAHL, PsycINFO, ERIC, SPORTDiscus, Cochrane, and Embase. Two reviewers independently identified and appraised the studies. Twenty-four articles describing 23 independent studies and 20 unique interventions met inclusion criteria. Of the 8 interventions resulting in a significant effect in objectively measured physical activity, all were center-based and included a structured physical activity component, 6 included multiple components, 5 integrated theories or models, and 4 actively involved parents. Seven of the 8 were randomized controlled trials. Due to the heterogeneity of the study designs, physical activity measures, and interventions, drawing definitive conclusions was difficult. Although the overall intervention effect was less than optimal, the review indicated that theory-driven, multicomponent interventions including a structured physical activity component and targeting both parents and their children may be a promising approach for increasing preschoolers’ physical activity and warrant continued investigation using rigorous designs to identify those that are most effective.