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MMWR Recomm Rep. 2001 Oct 26;50(RR-18):1-14.

Increasing physical activity. A report on recommendations of the Task Force on Community Preventive Services.

[No authors listed]


The Task Force on Community Preventive Services (the Task Force) has conducted systematic reviews of community interventions to increase physical activity. The Task Force either strongly recommends or recommends six interventions: two informational approaches (i.e., communitywide campaigns and point-of-decision prompts to encourage use of stairs); three behavioral and social approaches (i.e., school-based physical education, social support interventions in community settings [e.g., setting up a buddy system or contracting with another person to complete specified levels of physical activity], and individually adapted health behavior change programs); and one intervention to increase physical activity by using environmental and policy approaches (i.e., creation of or enhanced access to places for physical activity, combined with informational outreach activities). The Task Force found insufficient evidence on which to base recommendations for classroom-based health education focused on information provision, behavioral skills, and social support interventions in family settings because of inconsistent findings; mass media campaigns, college-age physical education, and health education because of an insufficient number of studies; and classroom-based health education focusing on reducing television viewing and video game playing because of the lack of a demonstrated link between reduced time spent watching television or playing video games and increased physical activity. This report provides additional information regarding the recommendations, briefly describes how the reviews were conducted, and provides information that can help in applying the interventions locally.

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