PCPFS E-Newsletter
Summer 2005

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

I want to welcome all visitors to our web site, www.fitness.gov, and introduce you to our e-newsletter. Our theme for this issue is “Get Outdoors, Get Active” as we embark on the summer season and celebrate outdoor recreation and the instrumental role the great outdoors plays in our physical, mental, economic and social well-being.

In May, the Council celebrated National Physical Fitness and Sports Month (http://fitness.gov/may_month_2005/maymonth-intropage.htm), recognized by an official proclamation from President Bush (http://fitness.gov/PresidentialProclamationforMay05.pdf). Council chairman Lynn Swann and members Denise Austin, Amanda Cromwell, Pam Danberg, and Dan Gable helped to kick off the month at the 2nd annual Fitness Festival (http://fitness.gov/pressrelease_healthierusfitnessfestival05.htm) on the National Mall. Thousands joined us as we danced, stepped, walked, biked, snowshoed, and Jazzercised our way to promote physical activity for health. The National Mall provided the perfect setting on which to host the event particularly as we continue our work with federal partners from the various land management agencies, the CDC, and the Indian Health Service to promote public lands for public health. People heard about getting active and learned about a variety of activities in May. It is our hope that they will now learn about all the great places to embark on these activities outdoors this summer.

Finally, I ask you to stay tuned to our website and look for more information about our upcoming 50 year anniversary of the Council. There are many exciting things planned to celebrate the occasion, and we hope you’ll join us.

Melissa Johnson

Council Members' Activities

Lynn Swann was the emcee at the Secretary's Innovation in Prevention Awards Dinner held at the Andrew Mellon Auditorium in Washington, D.C., on December 7, 2004. Dot Richardson and Denise Austin presented the awards. Lynn also served as a keynote speaker at the National Institute of Environmental Health Science’s, “Environmental Solutions to Childhood Obesity” conference (http://www.niehs.nih.gov/oc/news/obesity.htm) in June, and received an award at the 3rd Annual American Running Honors Gala from the American Running Association (ARA) (http://www.americanrunning.org/) for his contributions to youth fitness. Denise Austin also represented PCPFS at "Walking Works," Congress' program sponsored by the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association (http://www.bcbs.com/), and at USDA's (http://www.usda.gov/) launch of the new Food Guide Pyramid (http://www.mypyramid.gov/).

Katherine Cosgrove spoke at the Runner's Club of the Cure' of Ars School (http://www.archkckcs.org/curears/) and will be running and training with the students as an honorary coach in the spring. She represented the Council at the annual regional gala "Heart Ball," sponsored by the American Heart Association (http://www.americanheart.org/).  She speaks regularly on physical activity, fitness and health for women's and youth organizations and at conferences.

Tedd Mitchell is active in getting health and fitness messaging out through media and speaking engagements. Besides his weekly column in USA Weekend (http://www.usaweekend.com/), he discussed the 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (http://www.health.gov/dietaryguidelines/) during a TV appearance on KDFW Good Day Texas. Dr. Mitchell also gave keynote addresses at the Integris Health Hospital Systems in Oklahoma City and at the Health Living Expo 2005 in Knoxville, Tennessee, and he gave a presentation at the Chick-fil-A Operators seminar in San Diego.  As a part of his duties at the Cooper Institute (http://www.cooperinst.org/), he gives four lectures each month to seminar groups visiting the campus.

Council member Charles Moore has been elected to the board of directors of the Advanced Viral Research Corporation (http://www.adviral.com/), an AIDS research company.

Derek Parra's autobiography, Reflections in the Ice (http://www.derekparra.com/derek-bookcover.html#front), won the 2004 Benjamin Franklin Award for best biography/autobiography/memoir of the year.  He has become a sought-after motivational speaker and continues to represent PCPFS as he trains for the 2006 Winter Olympic Games. He was asked to emcee an event for Loma Linda Children's Hospital (http://www.llu.edu/lluch/) in his hometown of San Bernardino, California.

Featured Activity: Orienteering

Orienteering ("O"): A versatile sport or activity, orienteering has Scandinavian roots and maintains its popularity in Europe, though word is getting out in the US. Why feature orienteering? For one, anyone can participate regardless of age or ability and it's one of the featured activities on the President's Challenge website (http://www.presidentschallenge.org). There are different types of orienteering including foot-O, ski-O, MTB-O, and trail-O. Depending on difficulty, courses may be on or off a designated or marked trail (with the exception of trail-O). Foot-O consists of hiking, running, or walking; ski-O refers to cross-country skiing; MTB-O is a mountain bike course; and trail-O takes place on a natural trail allowing those requiring mobility assistance the opportunity to participate.

O is good for both the mind and the body as the object is to read a map, plan a route, and identify controls along the way. As noted, in some events, participants race against a clock, providing a good cardiovascular workout.

How it works:

The standard O course has a start and finish, controls (sites marked by circles that must be found by the participant) and control flags. Control flags are markers that contain some type of mechanism (hole punch, sticker) to indicate on a participant's control card that the control was found. Only Trail-O is not based on time, and controls can be sighted from a distance so that everybody has access to the control. Unless the course is for the very young (where routes may be identified by string), routes are not marked and the participant must use his/her map reading skills to identify the best course.

O-courses can be found across the U.S. in many local, state, and national parks. Competitions are held at the local, national, and international levels. In addition, there are teacher resources to design O-courses in school settings to help students develop skills in map and compass reading, angle identification, and team building.

For more information on orienteering visit: www.usorienteering.org/

Mark Your Calendar

6-11: International Children's Games (http://www.childrens-games2005.org.uk/)
21-23: Winning Grants for Physical Education (http://www.aahperd.org/naspe/grantconference/template.cfm?template=main.html)
26-Aug. 7: AAU Junior Olympics (http://www.aaujrogames.org/)
27-30: TrailLink 2005

14-17: Office of Safe and Drug Free Schools National Conference
29-Sept. 1: 14-17: National Association for Health Education conference, “Healthy Living and Learning Together” (http://www.nahec.org/htmdocs/calendar/nahec_conference/2005/)

Healthy Aging Month (http://www.healthyaging.net/)
20: Take a Loved One to the Doctor Day (http://www.omhrc.gov/healthgap/2005drday.htm)
20-21: SGMA Fly in for Fitness (http://www.sgma.com/legislation/flyin2005.html)
26-28: Action for Healthy Kids’ Healthy Schools Summit (http://www.actionforhealthykids.org/special_summit.php)
29-Oct. 1: AARP Life @ 50 Plus (http://www.aarp.org/aarp_benefits/natl_events/fifty_plus/)

Clean Air Month (http://www.lungusa.org/)
3-7: Walk to School Week (http://www.walktoschool.org/)
4: National Child Health Day (http://www.mchb.hrsa.gov/)
5: Walk to School Day (http://www.walktoschool.org/)
13-15: Walking for Health: Measurement and Research Issues and Challenges (Conference) (http://www.acsm.org/meetings/walkingconference2005.htm)
24-25: National Prevention Summit (http://www.healthierus.gov/steps/summit.html)
27-29: Cooper Institute Childhood Obesity Conference (http://www.cooperinst.org/conf2005intro.asp)

Grant Applications:
NIH/NIDDK: Small Clinical Grants in Digestive Diseases, Nutrition, and Obesity
Application Receipt Date: June 1, 2005 ; October 1, 2005

NIH: School-based Interventions to Prevent Obesity (Expires 11/2/2007)
Application Receipt Date: June 1, 2005; October 1, 2005

NIH: Improving Diet and Physical Activity Assessment (http://grants1.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-03-009.html)
Letter of Intent Due: 9/01/2005
Application Receipt Date: 10/01/2005

More grant opportunities can be found on the NCPPA E-Newsletter: http://www.ncppa.org/enewsletters.asp

President's Challenge: News and Partnerships

Wisconsin Governor’s Challenge
On March 29, 2005, Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle launched the 2nd Annual Spring Wisconsin Governor's Challenge. This effort follows the 2004 Challenge and the January, 2005, initiative. The Wisconsin Governor's Challenge is a 6-week initiative to get more Wisconsin residents up and moving. The Governor’s Challenge (http://www.wisconsinchallenge.org/) is a public/private partnership utilizing the President’s Challenge website (http://www.presidentschallenge.org). Over 25,000 people have taken part in the Governor's Challenge. These participants formed over 500 worksite, school, community, and government groups to encourage friendly competition. Over 10,000 Wisconsinites of all ages completed the program and received a free, personalized certificate from the Governor’s Challenge recognizing their accomplishment.

The success of the initial program, the continued support of Governor Doyle, and the work of President’s Council member John Burke, a Wisconsin native, led to the launch of a Winter Challenge (http://www.wisconsinchallenge.org/press_room/files/Winter_WI_Gov_Challenge.pdf) in January 2005. The Winter Challenge calls for Wisconsinites to register and be active at least 5 days a week (adults for 30 minutes and kids 6-18 for 60 minutes) to be recognized with a certificate from the Governor.

Governor Doyle stated, “I’m challenging you to join me by getting active and logging your activity each day. From shoveling snow to cross country skiing, there are more than 100 activities to choose from, so there’s something for everyone.”

Visit www.wisconsinchallenge.org for more information.

Get It in Gear
The Get It in Gear (http://www.get-it-in-gear.org/) program is provided as a public service by the Trek Bicycle Corporation and its 2,000 Trek dealers nationwide. Through the program, Trek dealers encourage children to be active and practice good bicycle safety habits. Children who participate in the program by registering on the Get It in Gear website and completing the minimum criteria (60 minutes of physical activity five days a week for 6-weeks), are eligible for a President’s Challenge (http://www.presidentschallenge.org) patch and certificate from their local participating Trek dealer.

Visit www.get-it-in-gear.org for more information.

President's Challenge Numbers*
Registered individuals: 235,454
Number of groups: 14,773
Number of schools using Fitness File: 10,015
Top activities (ranked by points): 1. Walking, 2. Running, 3. Biking
Number of people earning the Presidential Active Lifestyle Award: 28,052
Presidential Champions Bronze award (20,000 points): 20,002
Silver (45,000 points): 8,538
Gold (80,000 points): 4,053
Advanced Performance Bronze (40,000 points): 4,775
Advanced Performance Silver (90,000 points): 2,300
Advanced Performance Gold (160,000 points): 1,211
Remember: You're it, Get fit!

*Numbers current as of June 25, 2005

Publications Through Partnerships

One of the ways the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports produces publications to distribute and post on www.fitness.gov is to partner with corporations, organizations, and other government agencies to produce timely and interesting publications for Americans of all ages, backgrounds and abilities. During the term of the current Council, we have partnered to produce the following publications:

PCPFS partnered with the Kellogg Company (http://www.kelloggs.com/us/) and the National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) (http://www.aahperd.org/naspe/) to produce Kids in Action: Fitness for Children, Birth to Age Five (http://fitness.gov/Reading_Room/Kidsinactionbook.pdf). The publication is available in both English and Spanish. Many thanks to Kelloggs for producing and printing the brochure, to NASPE for providing the physical activity guidelines, and to Council member Dot Richardson, for launching Kids in Action in New Orleans March 31, 2004.

PCPFS partnered with the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association (BCBSA) (http://www.bcbs.com/) to produce Walking Works (http://fitness.gov/BCBSAfinalfinalWalkGuide.pdf), a guide to start and maintain a regular walking program. Dot Richardson launched the publication at an event sponsored by the Congressional Fitness Caucus (http://www.house.gov/wamp/fitnesscaucu.html).

PCPFS partnered with the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE) (http://www.aace.com/) to produce Rx: Take the President's Challenge, an English and Spanish physical activity prescription for physicians to hand out to children and their parents. The Rx publication was launched in New York on March 25, 2004. Melissa Johnson, executive director, and Council member Jaime Davidson represented PCPFS at the launch.

To see Rx: Take the President's Challenge in English: http://fitness.gov/Rx%20Pad.pdf; in Spanish: http://fitness.gov/Spanish%20Rx%20Pad.pdf.

PCPFS adopted Exercise: A Guide from the National Institute on Aging (http://www.niapublications.org/exercisebook/ExerciseGuideComplete.pdf) as its physical activity publication for older Americans. The NIA (http://www.nia.nih.gov/) has generously donated unlimited copies of the publication to PCPFS to distribute and allows PCPFS to place its logo on the cover. PCPFS will work with NIA to produce an update of the publication in the future.

Science Notes

The President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports awarded the PCPFS Honor Award to Dr. Timothy Lohman of the University of Arizona. Melissa Johnson presented the award to Dr. Lohman at the American College of Sports Medicine (http://www.acsm.org/) annual meeting in June. Past winners include Steven Blair, PED; B. Don Franks, PhD; Margaret (Jo) Safrit, PhD; Ed Howley, PhD; Robert Pangrazi, PhD; Charles Corbin, PhD; and Wynn Updyke, PhD. The award recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions to the promotion of the science of physical activity and whose work supports the mission of the Council. Anyone can nominate an individual to receive the award. Winners are selected by the PCPFS Science Board (http://fitness.gov/about_scienceboard.htm) and Executive Director. Visit www.fitness.gov for more information.

At its December 2004 meeting, the PCPFS Science Board outlined key initiatives for 2005. Among these are ongoing discussions on national youth fitness testing programs, refinement of the President’s Challenge (http://www.presidentschallenge.org/) PALA program, and identification of possible research funding initiatives. Commenting on the year ahead, board chair Jim Morrow stated, “There is much to be done regarding fitness levels. Through the PCPFS and its collaborative initiatives, we hope all people will become aware of the importance of a physically active lifestyle and choose to initiate and/or maintain sufficient physical activity for a health benefit. It is important that all PCPFS programs be based in science and that these messages be communicated to all.”

Dr. Don Franks, long-time PCPFS consultant, retired recently after years of service to the Council. We wish him all the best in retirement.

What's New at HHS

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
“Learn the Signs. Act Early” (http://www.cdc.gov/actearly) is a new public awareness campaign from the CDC. The campaign’s focus is to help parents understand the physical and mental development of their young child in order to help them identify some of the early warning signs for developmental disabilities, such as autism.

“Take Pride in America’s Health: Volunteering as a gateway to physical activity” (http://www.aahperd.org/aahe/pdf_files/ajhe/jan-feb_2005.pdf) by J. Librett, PhD, M. Yore, MSPH, D. Buchner, MD, and T. Schmid, PhD in the January/February 2005 issue of the American Journal of Health Education (http://www.aahperd.org/aahe/template.cfm?template=ajhe_main.html). Based on the responses of 2,032 survey participants, the authors suggest that people who volunteer are more likely to meet physical activity recommendations than those who do not volunteer.

In partnership with the USDA (http://www.usda.gov/) and Department of Education (http://www.ed.gov/), the Division of Adolescent and School Health (DASH) (http://www.cdc.gov/HealthyYouth/index.htm) at CDC is helping to develop resources for schools to meet the requirements of the new local wellness policies (http://www.fns.usda.gov/tn/Healthy/wellnesspolicy.html) that are to be in place by the 2006-2007 school year. The policy pertains to educational agencies participating in the USDA’s school meals program. In short, schools must develop goals for nutrition education, physical activity and other programs designed to promote student well-being.

CDC-DASH (http://www.cdc.gov/HealthyYouth/index.htm) has posted program evaluation resources online. Take advantage of these free resources, which were provided as part of the office’s Healthy Youth! (http://www.cdc.gov/HealthyYouth/evaluation/index.htm) program.

Health Resources and Services Administration
My Bright Future: Physical Activity and Healthy Eating (http://www.hrsa.gov/womenshealth/mybrightfuture/menu.html)
A booklet and corresponding wallet guide teach young women about healthy eating and physical activity and ways to incorporate those things into everyday life.

National Institutes of Health
Various institutes within NIH and national health and youth organizations came together to develop WE CAN! (Ways to Enhance Children’s Activity & Nutrition) (http://wecan.nhlbi.nih.gov/), a program targeting parents and caregivers of children ages 8 to 13. WE CAN! provides resources to help encourage healthy eating and physical activity. The program website contains information for parents, caregivers, communities, and media, including a handbook in English and Spanish.

NIH National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
NIEHS held the second annual conference on obesity and the environment June 1-2. This year’s theme focused on childhood obesity. Keynotes were given by Secretary Leavitt, Surgeon General Carmona, PCPFS Council Chair Lynn Swann, and Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee. Speaker presentations and supplemental information can be found on the conference website (http://www-apps.niehs.nih.gov/conferences/drcpt/oe2005/agenda.cfm).

Office on Minority Health
The African American Obesity Initiative (http://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2005pres/20050407.html) launched on April 7. The $1.2 million initiative will work to lessen obesity among African Americans. The department is partnering with three academic and civic organizations with close ties to the African American community. One of these organizations, the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education (http://www.nafeo.org/) will work with five of its member institutions to promote healthy habits among college students. The second phase of this initiative will target Hispanics, another population disproportionately affected by obesity and its associated illnesses.

Office on Women’s Health
The 2005 Daybook Generations: Women’s Health Across the Lifespan (http://www.4woman.gov/pub/daybook.2005) is available for download via the web (there are no more print editions available). The Daybook offers how-to tips on living a healthier lifestyle at any age and information on common health concerns and ways to prevent or manage them.

Surgeon General
The Surgeon General has designated 2005 as the “Year of the Healthy Child.” (http://www.surgeongeneral.gov/healthychild/) Among other things, the Office of the Surgeon General will address immunizations, childhood obesity, healthy indoor environment, illness and injury prevention, and safe teen driving in an effort, as Dr. Carmona stated, to “ensure a healthier population for the next generation.”

The Surgeon General released the first-ever report, Bone Health and Osteoporosis: A Report of the Surgeon General (http://www.surgeongeneral.gov/library/bonehealth) in October. In the report’s preface, Dr. Carmona states, “…with appropriate nutrition and physical activity throughout life, individuals can significantly reduce the risk of bone disease and fractures.”

Administration on Aging
Materials are available to support the Medicare Modernization Act (http://www.cms.hhs.gov/medicarereform/) and help consumers make use of the new benefits available under Medicare as of January, 2005. Included in the list of materials the AOA has available is a brochure from the American Cancer Society (http://www.cancer.org/), American Diabetes Association (http://www.diabetes.org/), and the American Heart Association (http://www.americanheart.org/) entitled Everyday Choices for a Healthier Life (http://www.aoa.gov/press/medicare/preventive/EverydayChoicesbro.pdf).

Also of interest…
The sixth edition of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans (http://www.healthierus.gov/dietaryguidelines) was issued in January, and the new USDA Food Guide Pyramid (http://www.mypyramid.gov/) was launched in April. The biggest difference over Guidelines of past years is the emphasis on reducing calories consumed and increasing physical activity.