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Physical Activity and Physical Fitness: Weighing the Relative Importance of Each

Sharon Ann Plowman

The last decade has seen a shift in emphasis from the goal of attaining physical fitness (a product) to the behavior of physical activity (a process) to achieve health benefits. A central question is whether the achievement of physical fitness (PF) is necessary or if participation in physical activity (PA) is sufficient. Three basic tenets of this shift are examined by using representative studies. They are: (1) both PA and PF will lead to health benefits; PF is simply a surrogate measure for PA, (2) the impact of genetics will be avoided if PA, not PF, is emphasized and that is desirable, and (3) it is easier to motivate “the masses” to accumulate lifestyle moderate activity than to undergo a vigorous exercise prescription. Results indicate that PA and PF might be independent risk factors, that both have a degree of genetic determination, and that participation rates for PA have changed little and remain insufficient. Both PA and PF need to be evaluated, promoted, and attained.

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American Kinesiology Association’s Role in Promoting School Physical Activity Policy

Monica A.F. Lounsbery and Thomas L. McKenzie

social outcomes. Table  1 summarizes our concerns about this shift, and we believe the “physical” in PE must be reinstated ( Lounsbery & McKenzie, 2015 ). Without PA being a central and thematic focus, PE will not be able to support public health goals and PE outcomes will not be understood or supported

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Recreation, Parks, and the Public Health Agenda: Developing Collaborative Surveillance Frameworks to Measure Leisure Time Activity and Active Park Use

Judy Kruger, Andrew J. Mowen, and John Librett


The purposes of this study were to review surveillance of recreation and park use to determine adaptations for tracking leisure time physical activity and increasing collaboration to achieve public health goals.


Surveillance in public health and parks and recreation and discussions at the 2006 Cooper Institute conference were reviewed.


This review suggested four actions to improve collaborative surveillance of leisure time physical activity and active park use. The proposals are to incorporate more detailed measures of leisure time physical activity and active park visits into park surveillance; include key park, recreation, and leisure items in public health surveillance; assess active park visits and leisure time physical activity more frequently; and establish public health physical activity objectives for parks and recreation and outdoor recreation participation.


These proposals can facilitate collaboration between public health and parks and recreation and exploration of active park use and outdoor recreation in relation to health.

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A “Ciclovia” in San Francisco: Characteristics and Physical Activity Behavior of Sunday Streets Participants

Susan G. Zieff, Mi-Sook Kim, Jackson Wilson, and Patrick Tierney


Temporary parks such as the monthly event, Sunday Streets SF, support public health goals by using existing infrastructure and street closures to provide physical activity in neighborhoods underserved for recreational resources. Sunday Streets creates routes to enhance community connection.


Six hundred and thirty-nine participants at 3 Sunday Streets events were surveyed using a 36-item instrument of open- and closed-ended questions about overall physical activity behavior, physical activity while at Sunday Streets, experience of the events, and demographic data.


Overall, Sunday Streets participants are physically active (79% engage in activity 3–7 days/week) and approximately represent the ethnic minority distribution of the city. There were significant differences between first-time attendees and multiple-event attendees by duration of physical activity at the event (55.83 minutes vs. 75.13 minutes) and by frequency of physical activity bouts per week (3.69 vs. 4.22). Both groups emphasized the positive experience and safe environment as reasons to return to the event; for first-time attendees, the social environment was another reason to return.


Temporary parks like Sunday Streets have the potential to provide healthful, population-wide physical activity using existing streets. The trend toward increased activity by multiple-event attendees suggests the importance of a regular schedule of events.

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Creating Activity-Friendly Communities: Exploring the Intersection of Public Health and the Arts

Kelly Cornett, Katherine Bray-Simons, Heather M. Devlin, Sunil Iyengar, Patricia Moore Shaffer, and Janet E. Fulton

collaboration between arts and public health to build healthy communities that align with national public health goals. 14 Philadelphia’s Porch Light Program, an art and health collaborative endeavor involving the Philadelphia Mural Arts Program and the Philadelphia Department of Behavioral Health and

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Physical Activity Levels of Older Persons Admitted to Transitional Care Programs: An Accelerometer-Based Study

Salih A. Salih, Nancye M. Peel, Di Enright, and Wendy Marshall

problems such as type 2 diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular disease and stroke, certain types of cancer, and osteoporosis ( Warburton, Nicol, & Bredin, 2006 ). Maintaining appropriate PA is a public health goal for older persons ( Haskell et al., 2007 ) with additional positive effects on daily function

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Are There Effective Intervention Strategies Available to Improve Physical Literacy in Adults? A Critically Appraised Topic

Chloe McKay, Johanna M Hoch, and Deirdre Dlugonski

resulting benefits that come with a physically active lifestyle. 2 The need to increase physical activity levels in adults is an important public health goal, as 31% of adults globally are inactive. 3 Therefore, it is important to understand how to motivate adults to participate in regular, health

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An Assessment of State-Level Planning for Physical Activity Promotion in the United States

Harold W. Kohl III, Ashleigh M. Johnson, Erin E. Dooley, Brooke Towner, Russell R. Pate, Kurt Heischmidt, and Eloise M. Elliott

website that addresses a chronic disease or other health-related condition and is designed to provide surveillance, public health goals and objectives, and a plan for evaluation. Data regarding prevalence and characteristics of plans, and the degree of alignment with existing physical activity guidelines

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Impact of Walking School Bus Programs on Self-Efficacy and Outcome Expectations

Nicole Cramer, Miriam J. Haviland, Chuan Zhou, and Jason A. Mendoza

Encouraging appropriate, enjoyable physical activity (PA) for youth is an important public health goal. 1 – 3 Youth PA is associated with improved cardiovascular, bone, and metabolic health, as well as self-esteem and cognition, while supporting reductions in anxiety and depression. 1 , 4 Active

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Understanding of the Single-Item Physical Activity Question for Population Surveillance

Adrian E. Bauman and Justin A. Richards

The World Health Organization (WHO) Global Action Plan for physical activity (PA) and national PA plans recommend regular monitoring of PA to ascertain progress in meeting public health goals. 1 Challenges here include the diversity of measures used to assess PA, lack of comparability among