May 2017
Updates from the Alliance:
New Commentary Examines Health Value of Recreation and Parks 
This May the National Physical Activity Plan Alliance released a new commentary produced by Andy Mowen, PhD examining "Recreation and Parks - Are They America's Best Health Value?"  The piece explores the health benefits of America's public parks and discusses the importance of continued funding.  The full commentary can be found on the NPAP website
Recent Happenings in Physical Activity and Public Health:
U.S. Community Preventive Services Task Force Issues TWO NEW Recommendations for Increasing Physical Activity
This month the U.S. Community Preventive Services Task Force has issued two new recommendations related to physical activity.  The first finding increases physical activity through built environment approaches that combine transportation system interventions with land use and environmental design.  This exciting recommendation is based on a systematic review of 90 studies and shows that physical activity increases among individuals in communities with new or improved projects or policies combining transportation with land use and design components.  The second finding recommends family-based interventions to increase physical activity in children.  Family-based interventions actively engage families by combining activities with health education to build family support.
#MoveInMay for National Physical Fitness 
and Sports Month 
May marks National Physical Fitness and Sports Month.  The President's Council on Fitness, Sports, & Nutrition wants to remind Americans that you don't have to be an elite athlete to be fit.  In addition to its many programs, the Council is using social media to encourage America's to start moving today.   
Celebrate Bike Month this May
May also marks Bike Month!  Sponsored by the League of American Bicyclists, events across the country throughout the month celebrate the benefits of bicycling and encourage people to think about cycling in their own lives and communities.  To learn more information about Bike Month, and to find events in your local area, check out  
Minneapolis Claims Top Spot in ACSM American Fitness Index┬« 2017 Report
The 2017 ACSM American Fitness Index program has helped communities identify opportunities to improve the health, and expand community assets, for the last 10 years. Top spots in the 2017 annual report went to (1) Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, (2) Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, (3) San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, (4) Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue and (5) San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara.  Check out the complete report here.
Financial Investment Supports Sustainability of Ireland's National Physical Activity Plan Efforts
Ireland's Minister of State for Tourism and Sport recently announced a multi-million euro investment from Sport Ireland that will support the sustainability of the country's National Physical Activity Plan through the National Network of Local Sports Partnerships.  More information on Ireland's National PA Plan can be found on the Get Ireland Active website, while information about the funding announcement can be found here.   
UK Report Details Inactivity Statistics while DOT Releases Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy

This 2017 Physical Inactivity Report, recently compiled by the British Heart Foundation, includes current inactivity rates throughout the UK and investigates health implications on heart heath and cardiac rehabilitation.  In an effort to improve health through reduced inactivity, increase productivity and improve UK society the Department of Transportation released a Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy last month that outlines government goals, available resources, and performance indicators to support and track cycling and walking activity in the country. 
ALBD Blogs Explore Inclusion and Equity 

These April blog posts from Active Living by Design explore ideas of inclusion and equity as they relate to both physical activity and health.  Risa Wilkerson outlines "Why Well-Being for Each of Us is Well-Being for All of Us" while Chris Mackey makes the argument that "Achieving Health Equity Means Including People with Disabilities."
Vision Zero and Safe Routes to School Partner Up for Safety
Safe Routes to School advocates are partnering with Vision Zero supporters in an effort to tap into the broader transportation initiative.  This collaboration allows both efforts to leverage data-driven approaches, advance equity, and focus investments.  More information about this partnership can be found here.
Vital Directions for Health and Health Care
Last fall the National Academy of Medicine released a series of discussion papers detailing Vital Directions for Health and Health Care.  These 19 priority areas developed with guidance from over 100 researchers, scientists and policy makers, transcend the foci of recent Affordable Care Act discussions. Last month JAMA published a special communication about these Vital Directions that can be found here.     
NPAS Offers Scholarships to attend National Walking Summit this Fall 
The National Physical Activity Society is offering scholarships to attend the National Walking Summit in St. Paul, Minnesota this fall.  The scholarships are designed to support the professional development of physical activity practitioners and to engage professionals who will disseminate information from the summit to others in the field.  Applications are due May 25th and can be found here.
Physical Activity Initiatives in the News:
Creative Interventions Strive to Increase PA in Native American Populations 
Native Americans are 60 percent more likely to be obese than non-Hispanic whites, and have a greater chance of diabetes than any other U.S. racial or ethnic group.  The Coeur D'Alene tribe in Northern Idaho has developed a creative new physical activity intervention to combat these health concerns.  Learn more about this interesting initiative, Powwow Sweat, in this NPR Story.  Meanwhile Native Americans from New Mexico, Arizona, Utah and Colorado walked to Four Corners earlier this month in an effort to raise awareness for health disparities and challenges.  More information about the walk can be found in this HHS blog post. 
Child's Play is Good for All of Us
The New York Times reports on a newly published study out of the Global Obesity Prevention Center at Johns Hopkins.  There, researchers have created a model to examine the expected financial impacts of the current childhood inactivity epidemic.
Your Work Commute Can Help
You Live Longer
Did you participate in Bike to Work Day on May 19th?  This article from TIME Magazine may leave you considering an active commute.  The article summarizes a UK study which matched heart events, cancer incidence, and deaths over a five year period with mode of work commute (bike, walk, public transit or combination).  Researchers found that people who biked to work showed the most benefit when it came to dying of any cause.  Read the full article on
Politico Explores "How Your Suburb Can Make You Thinner"
This Politico piece reports on the growing movement to engineer healthier environments and healthier lives.  Examining both the history and the current landscape of active transportation in suburban America, the article makes a case for revised zoning and introduces the difficult task of changing public perception.
Physical Activity Webinars
Upcoming Webinars
Host: America Walks
Wednesday, June 14, 2017 | 2:00PM ET

Upcoming Events and Conferences
Denver, Colorado | May 30 - June 3, 2017

World Conference on Movement
Oxford, United Kingdom | July 9-11, 2017
St. Paul, Minnesota | September 13 - 15, 2017
*NPAS offering 5 full scholarships to attend - Applications due May 25th*

Atlanta, Georgia | November 4 - 8, 2017

National Physical Activity Plan, 921 Assembly St., Columbia, SC 29208
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