PCPFS E-Newsletter
Winter 2007

This information was printed from The President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports,
located at http://www.fitness.gov

From the Executive Director
Melissa Johnson

Happy New Year! The President’s Council team is excited about ringing in 2007 with many new initiatives slated for the year. First I’d like to thank the 350+ 50th Anniversary Partners for teaming up with us in 2006 to celebrate the 50-year milestone of PCPFS. We applaud and commend you all for the fantastic work you are doing at the grassroots, state, and national levels. We value collaboration, and we know that the only way we will make a dent in the national physical activity challenges that we are facing is to tackle the issues together. We look to you to continue your efforts to get America moving as we now start the next fifty years of promoting the benefits of regular physical activity, sports, fitness, and healthy living.

We are thrilled about Secretary Leavitt’s announcement that the Department of Health and Human Services is moving ahead with developing comprehensive, national Physical Activity Guidelines (http://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2006pres/20061026.html). The PCPFS will play a critical role in outreach and planning throughout the process. The report will be ready for release in the Fall of ’08. We feel that this is perhaps one of the most important undertakings in the history of the physical activity field. Our professional colleagues have expressed their enthusiasm and support of this monumental step, and we are pleased to be part of the process.

We have a strong, dedicated Council in place with Chairman John Burke (http://fitness.gov/bio_burke.htm) and Vice-Chair Dot Richardson (http://fitness.gov/bio_richardson.htm) at the helm. Our new council members are extremely committed to our goals and action plan, and they are diligently working towards accomplishing the objectives we’ve set for youth, communities, the corporate arena, seniors, and public education/outreach. Please visit http://fitness.gov/about_bios.htm to read bios of all our members.

One of the issues the Council is focusing on is worksite health promotion. Employers that encourage, promote and offer opportunities for employees to adopt healthy habits, especially physical activity, enjoy higher productivity and cost savings. Starting right here at the federal workplace, the PCPFS is working with the Office of Personnel Management (http://www.opm.gov/) to challenge all federal employees to get active in 2007 through the HealthierFeds Physical Activity Challenge (http://fitness.gov/enewsletter/Winter07_cm_activities.htm). We feel strongly that we need to start with ourselves and practice what we preach if we are encouraging the rest of America to follow suit!

As you're contemplating your New Year's resolutions and thinking about how to find a way to finally make them stick, consider taking small steps to change some behaviors that will be good for your mind and body. Enjoy the exhilaration that comes with trying new things and the joy that accompanies introducing friends and family to activities that could change and lengthen their lives. Our President’s Challenge Physical Activity and Fitness Awards Program (http://www.presidentschallenge.org/) offers over 100 activities that can be done to earn Presidential awards, including many winter sports. If you’ve never learned to enjoy the outdoors in winter, resolve that this year will be truly a “new” year—a year of new experiences and activities to add joy and well-being to your life.

Here's to your best year yet!

Melissa Johnson, M.S.

Council Members' Activities

Spotlight on:
Corporate Physical Activity and Fitness

Medical and pharmaceutical costs increased $119 and $82 respectively for each BMI unit increase among individuals with a BMI between 25 to 45 (overweight to morbidly obese). (Wang, F., et al. (2006). Association of healthcare costs per unit body mass index increase. J Occup Environ Med. 48(7):668-674.

The year 2007 is designated as the “Year of the Healthier Fed” by Linda Springer, Director of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) (http://opm.gov/About_opm/ExecutiveTeam/LindaSpringer.asp). The President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports (PCPFS) is partnering with OPM (http://opm.gov/) to help the federal family be more physically active through the HealthierFeds Physical Activity Challenge (the Challenge) (https://www.opm.gov/healthierfeds/challenge07.asp). Starting on January 22, 2007, federal employees, retirees, family members and contractors from all three branches of government will be encouraged to be active at least 30 minutes a day, five days a week for a period of six weeks and to track that activity on the President’s Challenge (http://www.presidentschallenge.org/) website. Agencies and departments will be “competing” against one another and the winner will be announced after the program ends on March 18, 2007.

In light of this Challenge and the emphasis the federal government is putting on employee health throughout 2007, PCPFSNews felt this issue was an appropriate time to kick off a series of articles highlighting what some of our council members are doing to promote employee health.

The series begins highlighting the work of RunTex (http://www.runtex.com/web/4-9.asp) CEO, Paul Carrozza (http://fitness.gov/bio_carrozza.htm). For the past twenty years Paul has worked to improve the health of adults working in Austin-area businesses through a “Corporate PE” program. It has taken awhile, but Paul feels as though he and the team of individuals who help implement the program have finally found the right mix between teaching and hands-on activities to keep participants engaged in the program and on a path towards improved health.

The basics to the program are to help employees train for a local road race (running or walking). It may be their first or 21st 5K. The program takes participants through three months of training leading up to the 5K race (longer training programs are used for longer races). Participants are gradually introduced to a variety of activities in order to help build strength and endurance and improve running or walking form. Beginners start out participating in a one hour class at the worksite before, during, or after work. Workouts for the rest of the week are written for participants to follow on their own. The amount of workouts varies based on the person’s fitness level.

The following are keys to the program’s success:

  • Identifying someone within the company who is a program champion. This person may hold a supervisory or non-supervisory position. He or she may not be super fit and may be starting a program of regular physical activity.
  • Keeping people of similar fitness levels together. People are assessed up front to make sure they “train” with the appropriate group.
  • Having a goal. The race at the end of the program period keeps participants focused, motivated, and engaged.
  • Building gradually on successes. Workouts increase in length and intensity over time in order to limit burn out.
  • Utilizing the structure of the workplace to keep participants engaged. Work is a typical excuse that people use as a reason not to be active. This program takes away that barrier.

Update: At the running retailer’s convention held in November, Paul Carrozza was presented with the Ubuntu Award (http://www.balegasports.com/lesedi/ubuntu-award.html) for his contributions to the running industry.

Feature Article:
Walking and Biking for Transportation

“Transportation Department Promotes Cycling for Fun, Commuting.” This headline appeared in the November 1972 issue of the PCPFS newsletter. During that same year, the PCPFS adopted a resolution supporting bicycling and sent it to then Transportation Secretary, John Volpe, and Interior Secretary, Rogers Morton. What were the departments doing at the time to address the issue? Together, both departments published, “Bicycling for Recreation and Commuting,” which described government and grass root involvement in the promotion of bicycling as a form of transportation. The publication also covered issues including bicycle safety, commuting and recreational trails, and the steps involved in the development of a “model bicycle city.”

Today interest in the issues of walking and biking for transportation and the development of communities designed for such options is greater than ever. The Departments of Agriculture (http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/usdahome), Health and Human Services (http://hhs.gov/), Interior (http://www.doi.gov/), Transportation (http://www.dot.gov/), and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (http://www.usace.army.mil/) are working together to promote the use of recreational trails and other public lands and waters as places to engage in recreational and physical activities. An article published in the November 2006 issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine (http://www.ajpm-online.net/), “Characteristics of physical activity levels among trail users in a U.S. national sample,” reported that people who cycle or walk on community trails at least once a week are twice as likely as people who rarely use such trails to get the recommended amount of daily exercise.

The establishment of the National Safe Routes to School program (funded by Congress in 2005 through the federal transportation bill) and subsequent development of the National Center for Safe Routes to School (http://www.saferoutesinfo.org/) emphasize the importance of creating safe communities where children and adults can safely walk or bike to and from school grounds.

There are many partnerships on the State and local levels bringing together the health, recreation, transportation, and planning fields to encourage the development or promotion of public spaces that are activity-friendly. The increase in resources and national professional meetings focusing on this and related topics is proof that the public is taking note.

For more information, look for recent updates from HHS and other agencies or organizations listed in this newsletter. Do a web search utilizing terms such as parks and public health, active transportation, or active living (these terms are just a sampling). Be sure to check out the Safe Routes to School (SRTS) Guide (http://www.saferoutesinfo.org/guide/), which provides information on how to start an effective SRTS program.

Mark Your Calendar

22: HealthierFeds Physical Activity Challenge Starts (http://www.opm.gov/healthierfeds/)

American Heart Month (http://www.heart.org/presenter.jhtml?identifier=1200000)
2: National Wear Red Day (http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/hearttruth/events/nwrd.htm)
7: Girls and Women in Sports Day (http://www.aahperd.org/ngwsdcentral/)
14-15: Healthy Aging Research Network Symposium (http://www.son.washington.edu/cne/secure/display3.asp?SKU=07107-C&customerid=)

National Nutrition Month (http://www.eatright.org/cps/rde/xchg/ada/hs.xsl/nutrition_4920_ENU_HTML.htm)
13-17: AAHPERD National Convention (http://www.aahperd.org/index.cfm)
18: Last day to log activity for the HealthierFeds Physical Activity Challenge (http://www.opm.gov/healthierfeds/)
21-24: ACSM Health and Fitness Summit (http://www.acsm.org/AM/Template.cfm?Section=Health_and_Fitness_Summit)
27: Diabetes Alert Day (http://www.diabetes.org/communityprograms-and-localevents/americandiabetesalert.jsp)
28-31: Art and Science of Health Promotion Conference (http://www.healthpromotionconference.org/)
28-31: IHRSA International Convention (http://www.ihrsa2007.org/)

Save the Date:
Start planning now for May National Physical Fitness and Sports Month!

Grant Applications:

Improving Diet and Physical Activity Assessment (R21)
Application Receipt/Submission Date(s): New applications: February 1, 2007; October 1, 2007; June 1, 2008; February 1, 2009 (alternating standard receipt dates). Resubmission applications: March 1, 2007; November 1, 2007; July 1, 2008; March 1, 2009
See announcement (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-06-103.html).

Long-Term Weight Maintenance: Basic and Clinical Studies (R01)
Application Receipt/Submission Date(s): Multiple dates, see announcement (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-07-053.html).

Methodology and Measurement in the Behavioral and Social Sciences (R01)
Application Receipt/Submission Date(s): Multiple dates, see announcement (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-07-060.html).

Parenting Capacities and Health Outcomes in Youths and Adolescents (R01)
Application Receipt/Submission Date(s): Multiple dates, see announcement (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-07-061.html).

Research on Mind-Body Interactions and Health (R01)
Application Receipt/Submission Date(s): Multiple dates, see announcement (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-07-046.html).

Research Project Grant (Parent R01)
Application Receipt/Submission Date(s): Multiple dates, see announcement (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-07-070.html).

Understanding Mechanisms of Health Risk Behavior Change in Children and Adolescents (R21)
Application Receipt/Submission Date(s): Multiple dates, see announcement (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-06-298.html).

Translational Research for the Prevention and Control of Diabetes and Obesity (R18)
Application Receipt/Submission Date(s): Multiple dates, see announcement (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-06-532.html).

Studies of Energy Balance and Cancer in Humans (R01)
Application Receipt/Submission Date(s): Multiple dates, see announcement (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-07-176.html).

School-based Interventions to Prevent Obesity (R01)
Application Receipt/Submission Date(s): Multiple dates, see announcement (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-07-180.html).

Decision Making in Health: Behavior Maintenance (R01)
Application Receipt/Submission Date(s): Multiple dates, see announcement (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-07-204.html).

Research on the Economics of Diet, Activity, and Energy Balance (R01)
Application Receipt/Submission Date(s): Multiple dates, see announcement (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-07-205.html).

Improving Diet and Physical Activity Assessment (R01)
Application Receipt/Submission Date(s): Multiple dates, see announcement (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-07-259.html).

More information on grants and other governmental funding mechanisms can be found on Grants.gov (http://www.grants.gov/). In addition, the NCPPA E-newsletter (http://www.ncppa.org/enewsletters.asp) lists grants available from a variety of national organizations.

President's Challenge Program Updates

The General Mills Foundation is accepting applications for its Champions for Healthy Kids grant program. The General Mills Foundation partnered with the American Dietetic Association and the President’s Challenge program to help youth develop good nutrition and physical activity habits. The General Mills Foundation will award $10,000 grants to 50 community based organizations nationwide. In addition, the Foundation sponsors up to 50,000 kids to be active in the President’s Challenge Presidential Active Lifestyle Awards program.

Grant applications are due February 1, 2007. Visit the General Mills web site (http://www.generalmills.com/corporate/commitment/champions.aspx) for more information.

Science Board News and Notes

Three New Members Join the PCPFS Science Board

The PCPFS is proud to announce three new Science Board (http://fitness.gov/about_scienceboard.htm) members, Wojtek Chodzko-Zajko, Ph.D., Patty Freedson, Ph.D., and Tom McKenzie, Ph.D. Dr. Chodzko-Zajko is a professor and Department Head of Kinesiology (http://www.kch.uiuc.edu/) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (http://www.uiuc.edu/). His primary research interest is in the area of aging and physical activity. Dr. Freedson is professor and Chair of Kinesiology (http://www.umass.edu/sphhs/kinesiology/) at the University of Massachusetts/Amherst (http://umass.edu/umhome/index.php) and an Adjunct Professor of Medicine in the Division of Preventive and Behavioral Medicine at UMASS Medical Center (http://www.umassmemorial.org/ummhc/hospitals/med_center/index.cfm). Her focus is on exercise physiology, assessment of fitness and physical activity, pediatric exercise physiology, and physical activity and health among population groups. Dr. McKenzie is a professor in the Department of Exercise and Nutritional Sciences (http://www-rohan.sdsu.edu/dept/ens/) at San Diego State University (http://www.sdsu.edu/). His areas of expertise are pedagogy, physical activity, exercise, sport and sport psychology.

Members whose terms are expiring this month are Drs. Robert Karch, Amelia Lee, Robert Pangrazi, and Russell Pate. They have made major contributions to the Board’s success since its inception in 2003 and have dedicated much of their time to improving or enhancing the programs and materials of the Council and the President’s Challenge (http://www.presidentschallenge.org/) program. We extend a special thank you to Dr. Pangrazi who served for many years as a co-editor of the PCPFS Research Digest (http://fitness.gov/pcpfs_research_digs.htm).

We truly appreciate the contributions these individuals have made and wish them continued success!

Honor Award Update: William Haskell, Ph.D. (http://prevention.stanford.edu/facultystaff/detail.asp?10) was selected as the winner of the 2007 PCPFS Honor Award. Dr. Haskell has played a major role in the development and understanding of exercise testing and prescription and the role of physical activity in health. Congratulations to Dr. Haskell and thank you to all the individuals who submitted nominations this year.

What's New at HHS

Physical Activity Guidelines
During his keynote address on the state of the nation’s health, presented at the National Prevention Summit (http://www.healthierus.gov/steps/summit.html) on October 26, 2006, HHS Secretary Michael O. Leavitt (http://www.hhs.gov/about/bios/dhhssec.html) announced that the Department will move forward with the development of comprehensive physical activity guidelines (http://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2006pres/20061026.html). “Physical activity is vital to promote and maintain health, but it’s easy for many of us to overlook,” Secretary Leavitt said. “The physical activity guidelines will underscore the importance of physical activity to America’s health and assist on the journey to a healthier life. Good health -- wellness -- doesn’t just happen. Wellness has to be a habit.”

The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans will be issued in Fall of 2008. The guidelines will summarize the latest knowledge about activity and health, with depth and flexibility targeting specific population subgroups, such as seniors and children.

Secretary Leavitt underscored the importance of shifting from a treatment-focused society to one that values prevention-based care. Treatment for chronic diseases accounts for 75 percent of what America spends on health care each year, and overweight and obesity affects an estimated 66 million individuals. Emphasis on the four pillars of the HealthierUS initiative (http://www.healthierus.gov/) -- physical activity, good diet, healthy choices and preventive screening -- is crucial for the nation’s health.

The determination to develop the guidelines was made after a two day meeting convened by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) (http://www.iom.edu/) and chaired by Dr. William Haskell, Professor Emeritus of Medicine at Stanford University (http://prevention.stanford.edu/facultystaff/detail.asp?10). Expert research scientists presented a comprehensive review of the scientific evidence supporting the need for such guidelines. A workshop summary will be released by IOM in January, 2007.

The PCPFS will serve as the outreach arm of the guidelines. Executive Director Melissa Johnson serves on a federal steering committee led by Admiral Penny Royall and coordinated by Captain Rick Troiano. Dr. Bill Kohl from the CDC also serves on this committee.

A federal register notice will be posted at the end of January calling for nominations for individuals to serve on the federal advisory committee. Information will be posted on www.fitness.gov and emailed to the PCPFSNews distribution list as it becomes available.

Older Americans
On September 28, 2006, Secretary Leavitt announced the release of more than $13 million to 16 states to improve the health and quality of life for older Americans (http://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2006pres/20060928.html). This endeavor, part of a collaboration with The Atlantic Philanthropies (http://www.atlanticphilanthropies.org/) announced earlier this year, supports President Bush's HealthierUS Initiative which encourages people to take control over their health in order to live longer, better and healthier lives.

HHS will support efforts over three years in up to 16 states to support the delivery of evidence based programs for senior aging services provider organizations, such as senior centers, nutrition programs, senior housing projects and faith based organizations. At least 36 communities will have programs up and running within a year.

Women’s Health
The Health Resources and Services Administration (http://www.hrsa.gov/) released Women’s Health USA 2006 (http://www.mchb.hrsa.gov/whusa_06/), the fifth edition of the Women’s Health USA series. To reflect the ever-changing, increasingly diverse population and its characteristics, Women’s Health USA selectively highlights emerging issues and trends in women’s health. Data and information on life expectancy, postpartum depression, food security and smoking during pregnancy are a few of the new topics included in this site. Where possible, every effort has been made to highlight racial and ethnic as well as sex disparities.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
*Sports-Related Injuries Among High School Athletes---United States, 2005-06 School Year. (http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5538a1.htm)

MMWR, Weekly, September 29, 2006/ 55(38); 1037-140

CDC-Division of Adolescent and School Health
The School Health Index Training Manual (http://www.cdc.gov/HealthyYouth/SHI/Training/) is Now Available: “The manual is a packaged set of materials for conducting trainings or presentations on the School Health Index:  A Self-Assessment and Planning Guide (SHI).  Detailed materials and resources on how to implement the SHI in schools are provided.  Users can select the most appropriate sections of the SHI Training Manual and customize those components to best suit their needs.”

The CDC (http://www.cdc.gov/) and Environmental Protection Agency (http://www.epa.gov/) partnered with other public and private agencies and organizations to develop: Understanding the Relationship Between Public Health And The Built Environment: A Report Prepared For The LEED-ND Core Committee (PDF file) (http://www.usgbc.org/ShowFile.aspx?DocumentID=1480). [LEED: Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design] The report summarizes the linkages between public health (physical activity, traffic accidents, air quality, and mental health) and the ways in which communities are designed (land use, transportation systems, density, etc.) and provides strategies for making positive changes within communities to better improve the built environment (and health-related factors).

National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Seven institutes within the NIH (http://www.nih.gov/) “announced contracts totaling $61 million over 6 ½ years to conduct the largest long-term epidemiological study of health and disease in Latin American populations living in the United States.

As many as 16,000 participants of Hispanic/Latino origin -- 4,000 at each of four sites -- will undergo a series of physical examinations and interviews to help identify the prevalence of and risk factors for a wide variety of diseases, disorders, and conditions. Participants in the Hispanic Community Health Study (http://www.nih.gov/news/pr/oct2006/nhlbi-12.htm) will range in age from 18 to 74 years and will be followed over time for occurrence of disease. The study will also determine the role of cultural adaptation and disparities in the prevalence and development of disease. –Excerpted from NIH News October 12, 2006

And elsewhere…

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
The CDC and PCPFS are working with the EPA and other organizations to recognize communities that address the need for environmental supports to help older adults remain physically active as they age.

Entitled, "Building Healthy Communities for Active Aging," (http://www.epa.gov/aging/resources/factsheets/build_healthy-factsheet.htm) the goal of the program is to raise awareness in communities across the country about the importance of what EPA terms Smart Growth and its partner organizations identify as Active Aging for older adults.

The program will recognize community planning and development that improves quality of life for older adults in U.S. counties, cities and towns, including Native American communities. The Smart Growth component addresses such factors as density, design, walkability, housing and transportation in community design.

United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) (http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/usdahome)
FY 2006 Team Nutrition Grant Recipients

This year, two types of grants were awarded: traditional Team Nutrition Training Grants (http://teamnutrition.usda.gov/Grants/tnt06.html) and Team Nutrition Local Wellness Demonstration Projects (http://teamnutrition.usda.gov/Grants/demoprojects06.html).

Idaho, Illinois, Kentucky, Maine, Michigan, Montana, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, and South Carolina received the traditional Team Nutrition Training Grants. In addition to providing training and technical assistance, the grants will be used to develop strategies for parents, teachers and school administrators to serve as role models on eating healthy and being physically active and will allow States to collaborate and partner with other agencies and organizations that have programs and initiatives promoting healthy eating and physical activity.

California, Iowa, and Pennsylvania received the Team Nutrition Local Wellness Demonstration Projects. This cooperative agreement will allow these States to provide training and technical assistance as well as conduct case studies to assess local wellness policy activities in individual districts; document the processes and resources used by these districts; assess changes and improvements made toward a healthier school environment; and evaluate any short or intermediate outcomes as part of local wellness policies implementation. Funding is for September 2006-September 2009.

Task Force on Community Preventive Services
The Guide to Community Preventive Services (http://www.thecommunityguide.org/pa/default.htm) has three new summary sheets on physical activity recommendations. The summary sheets highlight policy and environmental approaches to physical activity. Refer to the Journal of Physical Activity and Health, 3(Suppl 1):S55-S76, 2006, for a detailed report.

*Maternal and Child Health Library, Georgetown University
Physical Activity and Children and Adolescents Knowledge Path is an electronic resource guide offering a selection of current resources that analyze data, describe public health campaigns and other promotion programs, and report on research aimed at identifying promising strategies for improving physical activity levels within families, schools, and communities. The knowledge path also provides resources that describe the consequences of sedentary behavior. The knowledge path for health professionals, policymakers, educators, coaches, and families is available at the Maternal and Child Health Library Web site (http://www.mchlibrary.info/KnowledgePaths/kp_phys_activity.html).

American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)
AAP (http://www.aap.org/) released The Clinical Report on the Importance of Play in Promoting Healthy Child Development and Maintaining Strong Parent-Child Bonds (http://www.aap.org/pressroom/play-public.htm) on October 9, 2006.