Friday

August 30, 2013

By Rosanne Prinsen, MSc


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: http://dx.doi.org/.  Access to research articles will be dependent on your institutional rights.

ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION
The announcement includes a commitment from the government to cut red tape that can stifle cycle-friendly road design and to encourage changes to the way roads are built or altered. Councils will be expected to up their game to deliver infrastructure that takes cycling into account from the design stage.

Here is the test; a cyclist commuter race: I gathered a group of agreeable cyclists, all of them of different styles, ages and speeds. We would all ride five kilometres on different routes into the (Calgary) downtown core and time the journey. Who would be fastest?

EcoMobility World Festival 2013: One neighborhood, one month, no cars.
EcoMobility refers to travel through integrated, socially inclusive, and environmentally friendly options, including and combining walking, cycling, wheeling, and using public transportation….. At the local government level in an ecomobile city, public infrastructure, traffic systems, and policies are designed to give priority to non-motorized transport as well as to reduce urban congestion. When a city focuses on EcoMobility, quality of life is enhanced and happy and healthy communities are supported.

The Pedestrian and Bicycle Transportation Short Series o­ffers three modules to augment undergraduate courses in basic civil engineering and/or transportation planning. The lessons, which cover Planning for Pedestrians and Bicycles, Pedestrian and Bicycle Facility Design, and Pedestrian and Bicycle Data and Performance, are ideally suited to be integrated into an existing course, such as the first or introductory course in transportation engineering.

CHILDREN
Active school trips: associations with caregiver walking frequency
Transport Policy Volume 29, September 2013, Pages 23–28
Highlights:
·         Data collected from a New Jersey statewide survey of walking behavior is analyzed.
·         A sub-sample of the data included information on whether children walked to school.
·         The walking behavior of the surveyed caregiver influences the likelihood of a child walking.
·         Household employment and vehicle ownership are also major factors for children walking to school.
·         Some associations are found with built environment features, especially sidewalks.

Transport Policy Volume 29, September 2013, Pages 243–248
This study (the first to use a control-group and peer-reviewed process) demonstrates that Eugene's Safe Routes to School program has increased walking and biking as school transport modes….. Walking and biking increased most when schools implemented multiple SRTS interventions. While these results are particular to Eugene, they provide evidence of the positive impacts of the SRTS program and identify elements of the Eugene SRTS program that could be replicated."

CHRONIC DISEASE
Physiotherapy Available online 21 August 2013
We recently completed the ParkFit study, a two-year randomized controlled trial including 586 sedentary Parkinson's disease (PD) patients, that evaluated a multifaceted intervention (ParkFit program) to promote physical activity. The results showed that the ParkFit program enables PD patients to become physically more active, suggesting that this intervention should now be further implemented into clinical practice.

OLDER ADULTS
Lifestyle has a dramatic impact on the aging process. Regular exercise in later years can mean a healthier, more independent and satisfying life. Adding a social aspect to your active living plan brings even more to successful aging!

PHYSICAL ACTIVITY
The ncdlinks.org platform connects over 2,000 individuals who are working on urgent issues caused by non-communicable diseases. The networks currently cover the topics of physical activity, nutrition, tobacco and alcohol. All the networks are free to join, but with a strict eligibility criteria.

URBAN DESIGN
Complete Streets—roads that are designed and operated to enable safe access for all users—offer many benefits, including improved safety, mobility, accessibility, public health, and quality of life. However, much of the work surrounding Complete Streets to date has focused on creating policies and guidelines rather than investigating the processes and action steps needed to successfully implement projects.

"Our annual list of the 10 best planning, design, and development websites represents some of the top online resources for news, information and research on the built environment."Every year, Planetizen recognizes ten websites as some of the best resources for urban planning, design and development... We've listed the websites alphabetically, not in a particular order of rank..."

WOMEN
European Journal of Surgical Oncology Available online 22 August 2013
doi: 10.1016/j.ejso.2013.07.097

The author argues that:
·         The evidence cannot be refuted that PA positively impacts on BC survival while enhancing QOL unlike other cancer treatments.
·         There is no evidence that PA harms BC survivors and overall health benefits of PA are emphatically proven.
·         Based on the above, the BC community needs to work on clear, pragmatic guidelines to maintain and enhance PA behaviour in women diagnosed with BC.
·         These guidelines can be refined and enhanced when the results from RCTs are available in the future.

August 23, 2013

By Rosanne Prinsen, MSc


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: http://dx.doi.org/.  Access to research articles will be dependent on your institutional rights.

ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION
American Journal of Preventive Medicine, Volume 45, Issue 3, September 2013, Pages 282-288
There are wide variations in the mode of travel to work across regions and sociodemographic groups in the UK. The protective association between active travel and cardiovascular risk demonstrated in this nationally representative study adds to growing evidence that concerted policy focus in this area may benefit population health.

OLDER ADULTS
Every department within the municipality will plan, develop and implement according to an age-friendly community lens, acknowledging and respecting the diversity of needs and desires among both the elderly and the young within the community

The OAP will offer free, evidence-based tools and information to address questions related to healthy, optimal aging. The portal will allow users to search the Health Evidence database of systematic reviews on topics related to optimal aging. The portal will be formally launched early in 2014.

Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, early view, (August 8, 2013)
doi:10.1111/jgs.12400
Before leaving the hospital, 115 people with a chronic illness, ages 70-92 years, were randomly assigned to a high-intensity aerobic interval exercise program or low-intensity exercises and telephone support. After three months, both groups improved in scores on health-related quality of life and physical activity assessments. The high-intensity group significantly improved their scores on the Senior Fitness Test compared to those in the low-intensity group.

Staging For Aging (24 minute YouTube video)
The Town of Jasper is a devoted advocate for developing age-friendly best practices. One of its key initiatives is a pilot proposal project called 'Staging for Aging' that includes the creation of a Seniors Outreach Worker.
This proposal sought broad community input into identifying challenges to community cohesion and engagement, while pooling available funding and services. The Seniors Outreach Worker helps to develop linkages between seniors and the community in order to improve their quality of life. Believing that a community’s most valuable resource is its people - and that it is crucial to provide opportunities for socialization, inclusion and engagement for all ages - Jasper also promotes other age-friendly initiatives, e.g.:
  • The Elder Skinny – a newsletter written and edited by senior residents, which highlights upcoming events, health tips, volunteer opportunities and services for seniors.
  • Harp Therapy – an activity led by a harp therapist, which provides an opportunity for seniors to socialize while relaxing to harp music.
  • Wilderness Access – a project that aims to encourage persons of all ages and abilities to take part in outdoor adventures with the assistance of trained staff and caregivers.
PHYSICAL ACTIVITY
J Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Vol 113, Iss 9, Suppl, Sept 2013, Pages A87
Although a high percentage of RD's reported promoting PA, little use of a specific format (i.e., prescription) in advising or promoting PA was done. There appears to be a lack of standardized practice by RDs in promoting PA.

J Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Vol 113, Iss 9, Suppl, Sept 2013, Pages A15
This study indicated that overall a high percent of RDs were advising and promoting PA but that additional training in this area is still needed.

The Australian Government has released the first ever State of Preventive Health report, a comprehensive overview of the current health challenges facing Australians in relation to chronic disease and measures to reduce the key risk factors including physical inactivity.

The Centre will focus on physical activity promotion, public health nutrition, obesity prevention and diabetes prevention, and will work in developed and developing countries, as chronic disease is prevalent in most countries across the globe.

URBAN DESIGN
In the 1970s, the people of Vancouver decided they wanted their city to be walkable and healthy. The city established a policy that it wouldn’t widen any roads to accommodate more single-occupancy vehicles.

WOMEN
American Journal of Preventive Medicine, Volume 45, Issue 3, September 2013, Pages 276-281
Increasing physical activity to a level commensurate with guidelines can alleviate current depression symptoms and prevent future symptoms in mid-aged women. Reducing sitting-time may ameliorate current symptoms.

August 16, 2013

By Rosanne Prinsen, MSc


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: http://dx.doi.org/.  Access to research articles will be dependent on your institutional rights.

ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION
Am J Prev Med 2013;45(3):282–288
There are wide variations in the mode of travel to work across regions and sociodemographic groups in the UK. The protective association between active travel and cardiovascular risk demonstrated in this nationally representative study adds to growing evidence that concerted policy focus in this area may benefit population health.

The paper reports on the development of a new instrument for assessing adults’ perceptions of the neighbourhood environment (PENS) and uses data from the iConnect project (www.iconnect.ac.uk) to explore the relationships between different attributes of the environment and levels of walking and cycling for transport and recreation. This is one of few studies to have examined attributes of the physical environment and their associations with walking and cycling behaviors separately and for different purposes.

Preventive Medicine, Available online 9 August 2013, In Press
Transport policies to reduce car trips could produce important health benefits in terms of reduced morbidity, particularly for those who take up active transportation.

Preventive Medicine, Available online 9 August 2013, In Press
Highlights:
•We examined resident's usage of parks and their participation in physical activity.
•Park visits were associated with greater odds of transportation physical activity.
•Park visits were associated with greater odds of engaging in leisure-time walking.
•Park visits were associated with greater odds of engaging in leisure-time MVPA.
•Park visits were associated with greater odds of engaging in total physical activity.

CHILDREN
This practice briefing is designed to give practitioners and managers of early years settings practical ideas for promoting physical activity with the under fives.

Transportation Research Board of the National Academies Volume 2327 / 2013 pgs 9-18
"If children perceived their neighborhood to be a safe area in which to walk alone, they were also more likely to walk. For parents, the perception that strangers were present and the presence of busy streets influenced the mode of travel. Different effects were produced across separately estimated home-to-school and school-to-home models."

OLDER ADULTS
The European Centre for Environment and Human Health at the University of Exeter Medical School has begun Moving Stories – a project designed to understand the impact of physical activity on experiences and the perceptions of ageing. The project will investigate peoples’ experiences of being physically active in older age; and also examine how physically active older adults are perceived by other people.

PHYSICAL ACTIVITY
… Ministers reviewed progress on a number of physical activity and recreation initiatives: the Multisectoral Framework for Action on the After-School Time Period, which seeks to encourage children to be more physically active and reduce sedentary activities or other unhealthy or high-risk behaviors in the after-school time period; planning for a National Recreation Summit to be hosted in Ontario in 2014 and the development of a National Recreation Agenda; and Active Canada 20/20….

This is the first time in England that physical activity levels have been measured against the 2011 Chief Medical Officers’ UK physical activity guidelines. Due to differences in measuring physical activity levels, comparisons between previous results and the latest results are difficult but best estimates suggest there has been only a small increase in adults meeting the guidelines.

Brochure outlines how sport and physical activity: Contributes to the economy; Empowers communities: Improves health of Canadians; and, Achieves excellence (Olympic and Paralympic games).

RESEARCH STUFF
This template was created to assist scientists and others with the development of Knowledge Translation (KT) plans for research but can be used to plan for non-research projects. The Knowledge Translation Planning Template is universally applicable to areas beyond health.

URBAN DESIGN
Cities Available online 9 August 2013 In Press
Highlights:
•Re-connecting urban design and planning and public health collaboration is a priority.
•Optimal built environment scales and thresholds for promoting health are unknown.
•Public health findings can inform and guide planning decisions.

"Built environment characteristics are associated with walking, bicycling, transit use, and vehicle miles traveled (VMT). Developing built environments supportive of walking, bicycling, and transit use can help meet state VMT reduction goals. But tools are necessary to understand how changes to the built environment may translate into changes in travel. Such tools can help optimize land use and transportation investments for reduced VMT and communicate such changes to the public.”

WOMEN
This report compiles more than 100 original and trusted sources of data to showcase the growth and potential of female bicyclists in the United States. It also suggest five key focus areas — the 5 Cs — to increase women's ridership (Comfort, Convenience, Consumer Products, Confidence and Community).

August 2, 2013

By Rosanne Prinsen, MSc


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: http://dx.doi.org/.  Access to research articles will be dependent on your institutional rights.

ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION
Where we live, work, and play influences health, as well as how we travel to those places. Transportation agencies are responsible for ensuring safe access to travel options, including walking and bicycling, for people of all ages and abilities. For a number of reasons, including chronic disease rates and changing demographics, there is growing interest across the country to better explore the links between health and transportation.

Walking, riding and public transport are important everyday modes of travel, and key parts of our urban transport systems. This statement sets out how the Australian Government will work to increase the proportion of people walking and riding for short trips, and accessing public transport, in our communities.

CHILDREN
Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2011;165(4):300-305
doi:10.1001/archpediatrics.2010.244
Cognitive performance of adolescent girls who walk to school is better than that of girls who travel by bus or car. Moreover, cognitive performance is also better in girls who take more than 15 minutes than in those who live closer and have a shorter walk to school.

International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 2013 10:83
doi:10.1186/1479-5868-10-83
Findings from this longitudinal study suggest that reducing the convenience of the car and improving the convenience of active modes as well as improving the safety of routes to school may promote uptake and maintenance of active commuting and the effectiveness of these interventions should be evaluated.

The Let’s Move! prescription for a healthier life includes goals that you and your patients can set together. Print the prescription and share it with your patients today.

Health Education & Behavior July 8, 2013
doi: 10.1177/1090198113490725
This study review concludes that playground interventions do have a role in increasing physical activity levels amongst school children during recess. However further research across a broader range of schools is needed to determine appropriate activities and designs suitable for specific ages and genders.

Preventive Medicine Available online 1 July 2013 In Press, Corrected Proof
This is the first study to evaluate the effect on physical activity of an intervention based on the CDC Coordinated School Health Approach.

Health Evidence Quality Review Rating: 8 (strong)
The review revealed a lack of high quality evaluations and statistical power to draw conclusions concerning the effectiveness of interventions conducted in physical education and school sport to improve enjoyment outcomes. It is argued that adequately powered interventions that target movement skills in secondary schools and evaluate school sport curriculum are urgently needed.

OLDER ADULTS
Health Evidence Review Quality Rating: 9 (Strong)
Practice Implications: Remote feedback is promising in an older population getting increasingly used to new technology.

This guide explains the research behind falls prevention exercise to give a better understanding of the kind of program that have been shown to be effective in preventing falls. It also provides examples of evidence-based programs that are currently in practice and demonstrates how they contribute to an integrated falls care pathway.

Health Evidence Review Quality Rating: 8 (Strong)
Physical exercise programs obtain clinically relevant outcomes in the treatment of depressive symptoms in depressed older people. Exercise, though not appropriate for all in this population, may improve mood in this group. Further research is needed to establish medium- to long-term effects and cost-effectiveness.

PHYSICAL ACTIVITY
Summarizes discussions of the National Recreation Agenda process and input to date. Includes discussion of definitions of recreation, how to provide a vision, positioning statements, cornerstones to support a series of strategies to help build the recreation community and realize the vision.

RURAL
This report provides an introduction to different types of walking facilities that can be constructed in rural areas. It includes case studies of a number of communities building creative and cost-effective walking facilities….. Although each community is unique, these case study examples may help other communities identify opportunities to provide better walking infrastructure and the tools to implement such improvements.

URBAN DESIGN
The purpose of this white paper is to identify an integrated and flexible approach to how metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs) and their partners can successfully consider aspects of health during the transportation planning process. Based on research including four best practice studies, (this) white paper proposes a framework for MPOs and partners to use to integrate health into metropolitan area transportation planning.

This primer aims to assist individuals and communities in understanding the complexity of public land ownership and some of the related legal and policy issues that may arise when partnering with public entities to create opportunities for physical recreation.

WOMEN
After a yearlong inclusive consultation and planning process, the Canadian Association for the Advancement of Women and Sport and Physical Activity (CAAWS) is proud to release its new strategic plan that focuses on raising awareness and working with stakeholders to address issues affecting the active engagement of girls and women in sport and physical activity.

Canadian communities are becoming increasingly diverse, creating new challenges and opportunities for community sport and physical activity providers. Unfortunately, Girls and women from diverse ethno-cultural communities are the most underrepresented in Canada’s sport and physical activity system. Based on learnings from two CAAWS projects, the following considerations were identified to increase the cultural awareness of service providers to support the creation of welcoming sport and physical activity environments.

WORKPLACE
International Journal of Cardiology Available online 26 July 2013 In Press, Corrected Proof
… it seems that not only does the kind of task have to be considered, but also the level of energy expenditure associated with each type of task and their combined effects. The implications for workplace interventions are as yet unknown. However, because of the existence of likely compensatory mechanisms, a sensible strategy for CVD prevention in the workplace should promote some diversification of occupational tasks and activity.