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J Community Health. 2011 Apr;36(2):231-7. doi: 10.1007/s10900-010-9302-1.

Parental perception on the efficacy of a physical activity program for preschoolers.

Author information

1
Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523-1571, USA. bellows@cahs.colostate.edu

Abstract

Childhood obesity is among the leading health concerns in the United States. The relationship between unmet physical activity needs in young children is of particular interest as the trend in childhood obesity continues to rise and unmet physical activity needs are identified. The preschool years are an influential time in promoting healthful lifestyle habits and early childhood interventions may help establish lifelong healthful behaviors which could help prevent obesity later in life. The Food Friends®: Get Movin' with Mighty Moves® is a preschool physical activity program which aims to improve children's gross motor skills and physical activity levels. The home environment and parental modeling are critical factors related to child physical activity in this population. The parent component, Mighty Moves®: Fun Ways to Keep Families Active and Healthy, was designed to address barriers in the home environment that lead to unmet physical activity needs in preschoolers and their families. The program and materials were designed based on Social Marketing tenets and Social Learning Theory principles. Four Colorado Head Start centers were assigned to an experimental group as part of the Mighty Moves® group randomized trial. Quantitative and qualitative evaluation methods were used to determine what messages and materials reached and motivated the target audience to increase physical activity levels. Results of the study indicated the program's materials helped families and children to be more physically active. Additionally, materials and material dissemination were revised to enhance program goals.

PMID:
20697786
DOI:
10.1007/s10900-010-9302-1
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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