January 25, 2013

By Rosanne Prinsen, MSc
Resource Coordinator

 Alberta Centre for Active Living

Note: where possible, we provide the DOI link to research papers in the Info Round-Up.  To use it, cut and paste the DOI into the text box on this webpage:  Access to research articles will be dependent on your institutional rights.

A federally incorporated service business located in Ottawa, Ontario.  This company specializes in the promotion of health and fitness for Aboriginal populations using cultural values. NWTS specializes in creating, adapting and delivering training resources in both English and French for First Nations, Inuit and Métis populations across Canada.

Supporting recreation practitioners in First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities in making positive changes through recreation. Includes information on eight (8) upcoming webinars.

Aurora, 10, had a really good concept — crosswalks where the stripes glow and flash! — and then you built it and it was cool and she was happy (video).

In much of America, walking – that most basic and human method of movement, and the one most important to our health – is all but impossible. Maybe not literally impossible, but inconvenient at best, and tragically dangerous way too often.

Jane’s Walk is a celebration of people and cities taking place all around the world on the first weekend of May.

Final community reports from the 2011 Alberta Walkability Roadshow.

Built on extensive discussions with experts throughout Canada, this charter details how we can create a culture where children choose to use Active Travel.

American Journal of Preventive Medicine Vol 44, Iss 2, Feb 2013, Pages 108–113
Of the various policies and built environment changes examined, the largest effects were seen with mandatory physical education, classroom activity breaks, and active commuting to school.

iSchoolTravel is a resource for students, parents, teachers and school administrative personnel to calculate, track and analyse the success of school or classroom programs that encourage active and sustainable means of students getting to and from school

The Ontario After School Collaborative is pleased to announce the launch of the Ontario After School Portal which is part of the Canadian Active After School Program website. On this site, you will find information about after school programs, and tools and resources to enhance quality in after school programs.

American Journal of Preventive Medicine Vol 44, Iss 2, Feb 2013, Pages 132–138
Conclusions: Sitting time was not associated with obesity cross-sectionally or prospectively. Prior obesity was prospectively associated with time spent watching TV per week but not other types of sitting.

International Journal of Older People Nursing, Early View (January 7, 2013)
DOI: 10.1111/opn.12015
The authors suggested that “preventing hospital-acquired disability may require a shift in organizational values around safety, from a solely protective approach to one that reflects an enabling philosophy emphasizing independence and self-direction. Such a paradigm shift would demonstrate a valuing not only of the absence of falls but also the preservation and restoration of function.”

To overcome…. barriers, a physician might modify an exercise prescription (for example, prescribe aquatics exercise for a person with osteoarthritis or recommend in-home exercise for those lacking transportation to group classes). Another approach was to reinforce the value of exercise for managing a chronic health condition at each patient visit. 

These latest fact sheets provide up-to-date facts and figures on the physical activity behaviors of adults in Scotland and Wales. These fact sheet include information on:
  • the numbers of adults in different age groups meeting the Government’s physical activity guidelines
  • statistics on outdoor recreation
  • data on personal travel
  • sedentary behavior patterns.

Sport Management Review Available online 14 January 2013
As inactivity and obesity levels continue to rise, calls are being made for sport development action to be further directed towards capitalizing on the value of community participation for health and social benefits. This paper seeks to highlight a current disconnect between physical activity and sport management research, and identify opportunities for collaboration.

Here's how it works: During any routine check of vital signs, a nurse or medical assistant asks how many days a week the patient exercises and for how long. The number of minutes per week is posted along with other vitals at the top the medical chart. So it's among the first things the doctor sees.

January 18, 2013

By Rosanne Prinsen, MSc
Resource Coordinator, Alberta Centre for Active Living

Note: where possible, we provide the DOI link to research papers in the Info Round-Up.  To use it, cut and paste the DOI into the text box on this webpage:  Access to research articles will be dependent on your institutional rights.

"A terrific street redesign is assisting economic development in a southern California community that has suffered from changing economic conditions but is nevertheless seeing significant population growth. This is a story of municipal foresight, excellent recent planning, and green ambition."

The Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center (PBIC) announces the creation of a new white paper series to expand access to the latest pedestrian- and bicycle-related research, resources and tools.  The first two papers in the series are:
·         An Overview of Automated Enforcement Systems and Their Potential for Improving Pedestrian and Bicyclist Safety
·         Using Health Impact Assessments to Evaluate Bicycle and Pedestrian Plans

Journal of the Transportation Research Board Volume 2299 / 26 Dec 2012
This issue consists of 19 research papers. Many topics are covered, including discussions of pedestrian behavior, access and connectivity of pedestrian networks, and pedestrian safety.

Because they have to connect places, transportation right-of-ways are long and continuous. This is true whether you are moving cars, trains, boats, natural gas, electricity, or pedestrians ► Since pedestrians need the same sort of long, continuous right-of-way that other transportation modes use, there can be opportunities for pedestrians to share the right-of-way (ROW) by including a paved trail ► Doubling up use on an existing ROW is usually easier and cheaper than creating a new pedestrian ROW from scratch, and therefore can be a wise use of scarce resources when pedestrian funding is limited.

Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice Volume 46, Issue 10, December 2012, Pages 1730–1740
Cyclists are sensitive to distance, turn frequency, slope, intersection control, and traffic volumes. ► Cyclists place relatively high value on off-street bike paths, bicycle boulevards, and bridge facilities. ► Route preferences differ between commute and non-commute trips.

Health & Place Available online 7 January 2013 In Press, Accepted Manuscript
We find that land uses such as buildings and roads and pavements were generally used for light activity, whilst green environments such as gardens, parks, grassland and farmland appear supportive of vigorous activity. Built land uses such as hard surface play areas were particularly used for activity of short duration……..

March 4-6, 2013 Washington, D.C.

June 23-27, 2013 Portland, OR
Reshaping Suburbia into Complete Healthy Communities & Exhibit on Successful Designs For Reshaping Suburbia

November 21-23, 2013 San Diego, CA

This study was a follow-up to a series of interviews with existing older adult users of Leisure Centres and was intended to assess the levels of physical activity among older adults…..

American Journal of Epidemiology Vol 176, Iss 12Pp. 1095-1100
doi: 10.1093/aje/kws199
People who said they were happy at baseline were classified as active or inactive. After two years and after four years, people who engaged in leisure-time physical activity had a lower risk of becoming unhappy. After two years, people who were inactive were twice as likely to be unhappy compared to people who were active. Those who changed from being active to being inactive had an increased risk of becoming unhappy.
If you haven’t visited this site for a while – it’s time to get reacquainted.  Within the past year, this Portal has undergone an exciting expansion by including new content to provide a broader range of information relevant to decision-making in a public health setting.  This includes resources for decision-making and program planning along with links to information on public health policy, preventing chronic diseases and other public health topics.

A video presentation explaining more about the elements of an ideal Complete Streets policy,

A video presentation explaining the basics of why we need Complete Streets.

A video presentation explaining what the Complete Streets approach can mean in your community.

This white paper by the USDOT’s Volpe National Transportation Systems Center for the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Office of Planning develops a framework for metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs) to use to successfully consider health throughout the transportation planning process. The report is a resource for transportation planners, their transportation partners, and new partners in the health field.

The Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC), the Bureau de normalisation du Québec (BNQ), and CSA Group have officially released Canada’s first national standard designed to help organizations and their employees improve workplace psychological health and safety.


January 11, 2013

By Rosanne Prinsen, MSc
Resource Coordinator,  Alberta Centre for Active Living

Note: where possible, we provide the DOI link to research papers in the Info Round-Up.  To use it, cut and paste the DOI into the text box on this webpage:  Access to research articles will be dependent on your institutional rights.

American Journal of Preventive Medicine Vol 43, Iss 6, Dec 2012, Pgs 636–642
Friendship plays an important role in shaping physical activity behaviors. Physical activity interventions targeted at peer groups and that account for the influence of friendship groups might have utility as a means of increasing youth physical activity.

Maturitas Available online 29 Dec 2012 In Press, Corrected Proof
This study investigated the role of walking outdoors on longevity, controlling for individual and other life-style factors as possible confounder...Findings suggest an independent and protective effect of walking on mortality and supports the encouragement of physical activity in advanced age for increasing longevity.

Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport Vol 16, Iss 1, Jan 2013, Pg 1
Welcome to Volume 16 of the Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport. We start this year with a series of varied and strong papers covering our four main discipline areas…. Measurement of physical activity and sedentary behaviour is a complex area, evident by the constantly changing and increasingly sophisticated instruments being developed. Methods range from observation, self-report, and reports by others to objective instrumentation such as accelerometers, pedometers, GPS systems, and other motion capture devices.

Agita Mundo has organized a World Day for Physical Activity to take place on April 6. The theme is Together for an Active and Happy Life! You are encouraged to organize a walking parade or disseminate a "virtual walking" message via e-mail, Facebook, Twitter, etc. to your institution at 10am on April 6 that encourages physical activity. You may register your event on the Agita Mundo website.

Landscape and Urban Planning Available online Jan 2013 In Press, Corrected Proof
These results suggest that the characteristics, not the number or proportion, of locally accessible POS are related to cardiometabolic health and, to some degree, physical activity. Maintaining or improving the quality of locally available POS might be a more effective urban design strategy to support cardiometabolic health than efforts to increase the accessibility of POS.

Urban Forestry & Urban Greening Available online Jan 2013 In Press, Corrected Proof
For PA in the nearest UGS positive associations with size, walking/cycling routes, wooded areas, water features, lights, pleasant views, bike rack, and parking lot were found. This indicates that PA in a UGS might be stimulated by providing these features there. However, interventions or longitudinal studies are needed to explore potential causal relationship.


January 4, 2013

By Rosanne Prinsen, MSc

Alberta Centre for Active Living

Note: where possible, we provide the DOI link to research papers in the Info Round-Up.  To use it, cut and paste the DOI into the text box on this webpage:  Access to research articles will be dependent on your institutional rights. 

Haliburton Communities in Action is a rare, well-documented model for promoting walking and cycling in a small or rural community. It illustrates how infrastructure and policy changes can be important elements of the social marketing mix, in this case to remove key barriers to walking and cycling. Find out what the Committee did and the results of its recent formal impact evaluation (preliminary impact results showed dramatic increases in walking and cycling.) Designated a Landmark case study in 2012.

Wednesday April 10, 2013, 12 noon to 1:00 PM Eastern Time. Registration is $50; free for the first 25 connecting locations that tell our
registrar how they have used information from past Tools of Change webinars or from the Tools of Change website.

American Journal of Preventive Medicine Vol 44, Iss 1, Jan 2013, Pages 76–84
Nordic walking exerts beneficial effects on resting heart rate, blood pressure, exercise capacity, maximal oxygen consumption, and quality of life in patients with various diseases and can thus be recommended to a wide range of people as primary and secondary prevention.

A list of four improvements that could make walking safer or easier in your neighborhood…

An interactive resource for citizens, planners, and engineers on how to create walkable communities. The site offers tactics and case studies on six disciplines – advocacy, design and engineering, encouragement and education, policy, land use, and enforcement – to help local advocates and practitioners create their own pro-walking plan

Journal of Adolescence In Press, Corrected Proof
This research is unique in its examination of the long-term associations between social relationships, self-perceptions, hope, attraction to physical activity, BMI and program participation in a physical activity-based PYD program for low-income youth.

We found that many states have laws to improve student safety when walking and bicycling to school. We also found that some types of state laws, such as those requiring crossing guards, speed zones and traffic calming around schools, were linked with more principals reporting that more students were allowed to walk/bike to school….

American Journal of Preventive Medicine Vol 44, Iss 1, Jan 2013, Pages 48–55
Physical activity of female adolescents, as opposed to boys, may be more strongly influenced by friends. These current findings support previous research on correlates of sports participation indicating that girls rate social aspects (e.g., being a member of a team, being with friends) as some of the strongest appeals for their sports participation.

Physical environmental characteristics promoting independent and active transport to children's meaningful places
Applied Geography Volume 38, March 2013, Pages 43–52
Dense residential structure increased the likelihood of coming to the place alone. ► Dense residential structure decreased the likelihood of using active transport. ► The most suburban settings were likely to be reached actively and independently. ► Children's PA in different environments can be studied with self-reported mapping.

Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans Midcourse Report: Strategies to Increase Physical Activity Among Youth will be released in early 2013. 

International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity 2012, 9:133
doi: 10.1186/1479-5868-9-133
The findings strongly suggest older adults are motivated to walk if there are opportunities for social contact whether it is planned e.g. attending a church or going to a restaurant or the social contact is unplanned e.g. while visiting a hairdresser. These destinations are important to not only promote walking but to allow seniors to remain socially engaged.

A new free app, developed by an associate professor at the University of Toronto, enables seniors to rate locations on their age-friendliness…

International Journal of Medical Informatics In Press, Corrected Proof
Active Lifestyle is a tablet app to assists elderly to follow physical training plans at home. ► The app proves feasible to support and motivate elderly to perform balance and strength exercises. ► The participants’ enjoyed following the training plans using the Active Lifestyle app. ► The participants felt proud about using the tablet and shared this experience with their families.

Social participation is an important correlate of health and well-being in older adults. It may be that social support gained through social contacts is as important in these associations as the number of activities in which one participates frequently.

Browse the latest data on physical activity in the UK, including achievement of guidelines, sedentary behavior, international differences, types of physical activity, active travel and influencing factors.

American Journal of Preventive Medicine Vol 44, Iss 1, Jan 2013, Pages 23–29
The current study shows that leisure-time physical activity has a meaningful association with longevity. Although adhering to a physically active lifestyle over the life span is a substantial time investment, this is a sound investment that is likely more than compensated for by the years of life gained. 

Health & Place Volume 19, January 2013, Pages 33–44

Controlling for socio-demographic and lifestyle factors and for vascular diseases had negligible impact upon the influence of built environmental factors highlighting the importance of urban design and planning in community public health interventions.

The present study provides longitudinal evidence of the independent effects of the built environment upon the weight outcomes after adjustments for a range of individual level variables. That a set of built environment morphometrics related to neighbourhood walkability remained significant subsequent to individual level adjustments is indicative of a physical activity related mechanism involved in obesity causation.
Health & Place Volume 19, January 2013, Pages 89–98
Disadvantaged neighbourhoods have greater street connectivity and a more diverse land use mix. ► Residents of disadvantaged neighbourhoods are less likely to have access to a motor vehicle. ► The built environment of disadvantaged neighbourhoods and limited motor vehicle access contribute to higher levels of walking for transport. ► Built environment interventions that increase walking for transport in disadvantaged neighbourhoods may reduce inequalities in chronic disease.

A new, helpful guide for communities looking to implement Complete Streets policies. The guide provides case studies and real-life examples of implementation strategies to improve the walking environment.

Public transportation is vital in giving residents choices in how they travel, and it is a key component of planning and building Complete Streets. This video from Everybody Walk! explores the reasons why.

The first in a series of reports from EPA's Smart Growth Program designed to inform developers, businesses, local government, and other groups about the benefits of smart growth development.