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"Promoting Health Through Physical Activity"

Greetings from the faculty, staff, and students from the USC Prevention Research Center. We are pleased to be in our 10th year as a Center and enjoy sharing with you news about physical activity environment and policy events. In July I will be leaving the University of South Carolina for employment as Department Chair for Exercise and Nutritional Sciences at San Diego State University. As such, the USC Prevention Research is searching for a Center Director and Principal Investigator to begin in August 2003. Please see our announcement at the bottom of the newsletter. I hope you will consider applying for the position and sharing the announcement with others. Involvement with the CDC Prevention Research Center Program and the PRC at South Carolina has been a highlight of my career. Physical activity and public health has grown immensely in the past years and is in the process of "taking off". Thanks for your tireless work to promote active lifestyles in every community throughout the world. Let's stay in touch… Barb

Barb Ainsworth, Director
Dennis Shepard, Deputy Director
Delores Pluto, Newsletter Editor (dmpluto@sc.edu)
IN THIS ISSUE – March/April 2003

NEWS YOU CAN USE: National Public Health Week; Move for Health


RESEARCH NOTES: Promoting PA in Socially/Economically Deprived Community; Fitting in Fitness; Correlates of PA; PA Perceptions of Older Adults

REPORTS, SURVEYS, GUIDELINES, RESOURCES: Promising Practices; Safe Routes to School Toolkit; Bicycle/Pedestrian Progress; Leadership for Active Living Resources; PA Promotion Brochures

UPCOMING CONFERENCES AND WORKSHOPS: Steps to a Healthier US Summit; Physical Activity and Public Health Course



NATIONAL PUBLIC HEALTH WEEK will be April 7?13. This year's theme is "Getting in Shape for the Future, Healthy Eating and Active Living." Go to http://www.apha.org/nphw/ for links to resource materials, a toolkit, planner's guide, fact sheets, and press room.

MOVE FOR HEALTH: The World Health Organization (WHO) has launched "Move for Health" as an annual global initiative to promote physical activity as essential for health and well-being. Move for Health is part of a broader WHO initiative to address the growing burden of chronic diseases through its Global Strategy on Diet, Physical Activity and Health. WHO proposes Member States celebrate the annual Move for Health Day on May 10th, but the timing of events will be left to the discretion and resources of individual countries. For more information, go to http://www.who.int/hpr/physactiv/move.for.health.shtml.

For a list of PA related observances and events, visit the PA links section of our website at http://prevention.sph.sc.edu/palinks/index.htm.


FY2003 BUDGET PASSED. The final FY2003 spending bill became law on Feb. 20. The bill includes $795 million for chronic disease prevention and health promotion. Within that, $34 million is set aside for programs within CDC's Division of Nutrition and Physical Activity and $37 million for community health promotion. The Youth Media Campaign (YMC) received $51 million (down from $68.4 million last year). Public health improvement received $153 million. The budget also included a 20% increase in funding for the Physical Education for Progress program (PEP) bringing total dollars to $60 million (up from $50M in 2002). Congress did not fund the Urban Park and Recreation Recovery Program (UPARR), which supported local park and recreation revitalization projects. The Land Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), which provides grants to state and local governments for land and water conservation efforts and recreational development and access, received approximately $413 million (down by about $45 million from FY '02). (from the "Activity Advocate," NCPPA)

IMPACT ACT: The 10 cosponsors in the US House of Representatives reintroduced the Improved Nutrition and Physical Activity Act (IMPACT) on February 12th. The bill authorizes several grant programs for states and communities to promote nutrition and physical activity, the CDC Youth Media Campaign, coordinated school health, grants for interventions, activities and research to promote healthy eating and PA to youth, a youth fitness study, several reports, training for health professionals, and a demonstration project through Medicare for medical nutritional therapy to manage/treat obesity, poor nutrition, and physical inactivity. While this bill authorizes the programs, it does not fund them. To follow the progress of the bill, go to http://thomas.loc.gov/ and enter the bill number HR 716.


For additional summaries of recent research on promoting physically active lifestyles in community settings, look at the Research Updates at http://prevention.sph.sc.edu.

PROMOTING PA IN SOCIALLY/ECONOMICALLY DEPRIVED COMMUNITY: A recent study in Scotland assessed the impact of two physical activity (PA) interventions on non-regularly active individuals in a socially and economically deprived community. Participants volunteered to be included in either a fitness assessment intervention or an exercise consultation intervention. Within their chosen intervention group, participants were randomly assigned to either an experimental condition or a control condition. Participants in the fitness assessment intervention received a personal exercise program based on comprehensive fitness testing, and participants in the exercise consultation intervention received counseling about physical activity. PA significantly increased in both intervention groups at 4 weeks and was maintained at 6 months; however PA was maintained after 1 year in only the exercise consultation group. These findings suggest that non-regularly active participants who receive exercise consultations have better long-term adherence to PA than those who receive fitness assessments. In addition, the findings suggest that socially and economically deprived populations respond favorably to PA interventions. Lowther, Mutrie, & Scott. "Promoting physical activity in a socially and economically deprived community: A 12 month randomized control trial of fitness assessment and exercise consultation." Journal of Sport Sciences, 20:577-588, 2002.

FITTING IN FITNESS: A six-week physical activity intervention for middle-aged women, called Fitting in Fitness for Life! (FIF), was evaluated. FIF used a cognitive-behavioral approach, along with empowerment techniques, and was aimed at increasing levels of physical activity among middle-class, white women. The participants significantly increased the number of light, moderate, and vigorous physical activity sessions they participated in, as well as the total number of physical activity sessions. Total physical activity levels also increased from baseline to post-intervention and were maintained at follow-up. The authors conclude that a cognitive-behavioral, empowerment-based physical activity intervention that focuses on women's distinct barriers can be effective at increasing physical activity levels for white, middle-aged women. Segar, Jayaratne, et al. "Fitting Fitness into Women's Lives: Effects of a Gender-tailored Physical Activity Intervention." Women's Health Issues, 12(6):338-347, 2002.

CORRELATES OF PA: A cross-sectional survey was conducted to examine urban-rural and socioeconomic status differences in physical activity behavior, and various environmental and social influences on that behavior. The results indicate that lower income residents were less likely than higher income residents to meet physical activity recommendations. Rural residents were the less likely to be active than either urban or suburban residents. Among urban respondents, there was an increase in the likelihood to meet recommendations with an increase in the number of facilities available for exercise (including neighborhood streets, parks, and shopping malls). Parks, Housemann, & Brownson. "Differential correlates of physical activity in urban and rural adults of various socioeconomic backgrounds in the United States." Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health, 57:29-35, 2003.

PA PERCEPTIONS OF OLDER ADULTS: A qualitative study was undertaken to explore the perceptions, motivations, and barriers to physical activity in adults 75 years of age and older. Interviews with 33 participants revealed that many viewed sedentary behavior as harmful, were unsure of the proper amounts of physical activity to perform, perceived themselves as relatively active, and wanted more information from their physicians about physical activity. In addition, participants were motivated to be physically active to keep their independence, to stay healthy, to keep up their appearances, and to maintain family relationships. Barriers included lack of time, poor health, aging, and adverse environments. Grossman & Stewart. "You aren't going to get better by just sitting around: Physical activity perceptions, motivations, and barriers in adults 75 years of age and older." The American Journal of Geriatric Cardiology, 12(1):33-37, 2003.


PROMISING PRACTICES: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently published "Promising Practices in Chronic Disease Prevention and Control. A Public Health Framework for Action." This book was developed to provide a framework to help state and local health departments build new chronic disease prevention and control programs and enhance existing programs. It includes chapters on disease prevention and control (specifically diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, and arthritis) and risk reduction strategies (in the area of oral health, nutrition, physical activity, and tobacco). It also contains a chapter on "Building a Healthier Future Through School Health Programs." In addition to describing some of the most promising practices available to state programs, the book provides numerous sources that describe state and local examples of what can be achieved; state-of-the-art strategies, methods, and tools; and training opportunities. You can also order hardcopies from that web address or by contacting CDC at (770) 488-5706.

SAFE ROUTES TO SCHOOL TOOLKIT: The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has developed "Safe Routes to School," a toolkit for use by educators and others to promote walking and biking to school. The toolkit includes sections on mapping the routes to school, activities and outreach, and classroom lessons. It also includes sample Safe Routes to School forms, press releases, posters, and other resources. The toolkit is available on the web at http://preview.tinyurl.com/355vqd .

BICYCLE/PEDESTRIAN PROGRESS: The National Center for Bicycling & Walking released a report in February 2003 titled "Are We There Yet? Assessing the Performance of State Departments of Transportation on Accommodating Bicycles and Pedestrians." Based on a interviews with 49 of the state departments of transportation and the District of Columbia, the study looked at four topics: statewide bicycle and pedestrian plans, accommodating bicycles in state highway projects, providing sidewalks for pedestrians in state highway projects in urban areas, and implementing a statewide Safe Routes to School Program. Only 11 DOTs have bicycle and pedestrian plans, and routinely accommodate bicycles and pedestrians in state highway projects. To see how your state is doing, see the report on the NCBW web site at http://www.bikewalk.org/thepractice.php.

LEADERSHIP FOR ACTIVE LIVING RESOURCES: "Leadership for Active Living" is a national initiative supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF). The initiative focuses on state and local leaders, with the goals of educating leaders about the impact of community design on health; providing information about policies and programs that support active living; and creating tools and materials to help leaders implement active living strategies. Two resources developed for this initiative include "Leadership Action Strategies" at http://www.goforyourlife.vic.gov.au/hav/articles.nsf/pracpages/Leadership_for_Active_Living?open and "A Primer On Active Living For Government Officials," at http://www.smartgrowth.org/library/articles.asp?art=1406&res=1024

PA PROMOTION BROCHURES: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) just announced the availability of four free brochures to help parents, teachers, and principals increase physical activity among elementary and middle school?aged youth. These colorful brochures contain photos, motivating messages, and specific activity ideas for home, school, and community. The parents brochure is available in English and Spanish versions. To print or order copies, go to http://www.cdc.gov/HealthyYouth/PhysicalActivity or call toll free (888) 231-6405.


For a more complete list of conferences and workshops, visit the PA links section of our website at http://prevention.sph.sc.edu/PAlinks/index.html

STEPS TO A HEALTHIER US SUMMIT: Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy G. Thompson will lay out his priorities and programs for "Steps to a Healthier US" at this national summit meeting in Baltimore, MD, April 15-16. The summit will highlight policies that promote healthy environments and model programs from communities that use Healthy People 2010 as the cornerstone of their planning efforts. For more information, go to http://www.healthypeople.gov.

PHYSICAL ACTIVITY AND PUBLIC HEALTH COURSE (PAPH), sponsored by the USC PRC and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, is entering its 9th year of successful training for researchers and public health practitioners. The PAPH course offerings feature an 8-day Postgraduate Course on Research Directions and Strategies and a 6-day Practitioner's Course on Community Interventions. Course faculty includes nationally recognized experts in public health research and practice. The Research Course serves post?doctoral personnel and is designed to develop research competencies related to physical activity and public health. The Practitioner's Course is for those professionally involved or interested in community-based initiatives to promote physical activity. The 2003 PAPH Courses will be held September 16-24, 2003 at the Sea Pines Resort and Conference Center on Hilton Head Island, SC. For more information, please visit our website at http://prevention.sph.sc.edu/seapines/index.htm or contact Janna Borden at 803.576.6050 or janna.borden@sc.edu.


POSITION ANNOUNCEMENT: The Prevention Research Center (PRC), at the Arnold School of Public Health (SPH), University of South Carolina, has an opening Director/Principal Investigator, with appropriate department appointment as associate or full professor (may be with or without tenure). For more information, see the position announcement on the web at http://prevention.sph.sc.edu, call us at (803) 777-4253; fax (803) 777-9007; or email Maxine Mixon at mmixon@sc.edu. Anticipated start date: August 16, 2003. EEO/Affirmative Action Employer. Women and minorities are encouraged to apply.

Writers: Delores Pluto, Tracy Jenkins, Marlo Cavnar

This and past issues of the "University of South Carolina Prevention Research Center Notes" are available on our website at http://prevention.sph.sc.edu/Newsletter/index.htm. To submit an item, please e-mail Delores Pluto at dmpluto@sc.edu.

To subscribe or unsubscribe to this newsletter, e-mail the Prevention Research Center at USCPRC@gwm.sc.edu. When subscribing, please include your name, e-mail address, title, and organizational affiliation. There is no subscription cost.

For continuing discussions about physical activity, join the Physical Activity and Public Health On-Line Network listserv. Instructions are located on our website, at http://prevention.sph.sc.edu.

The USC Prevention Research Center is a member of the CDC Prevention Research Center's National Network, consisting of 26 Centers in the U.S. For more information about the PRC National Network, visit http://www.cdc.gov/prc/index.htm.

Prevention Research Center
Norman J. Arnold School of Public Health, University of South Carolina
730 Devine Street, Columbia, South Carolina 29208

Funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


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