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Rationale, design and methods of the HEALTHY study physical education intervention component

Abstract

The HEALTHY primary prevention trial was designed to reduce risk factors for type 2 diabetes in middle school students. Middle schools at seven centers across the United States participated in the 3-year study. Half of them were randomized to receive a multi-component intervention. The intervention integrated nutrition, physical education (PE) and behavior changes with a communications strategy of promotional and educational materials and activities. The PE intervention component was developed over a series of pilot studies to maximize student participation and the time (in minutes) spent in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA), while meeting state-mandated PE guidelines. The goal of the PE intervention component was to achieve 150 min of MVPA in PE classes every 10 school days with the expectation that it would provide a direct effect on adiposity and insulin resistance, subsequently reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes in youth. The PE intervention component curriculum used standard lesson plans to provide a comprehensive approach to middle school PE. Equipment and PE teacher assistants were provided for each school. An expert in PE at each center trained the PE teachers and assistants, monitored delivery of the intervention and provided ongoing feedback and guidance.

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Acknowledgements

We acknowledge Scott Bowman, Physical Education Instructor, Irvine Unified School District, Irvine, CA, for the inspiration and basic design of the Fitness Laboratory on Wheels (FLOW). We also acknowledge Roger Rodriguez of the San Antonio Independent School District, San Antonio, TX for his insights into middle school physical education programs. Past and present HEALTHY study group investigators on the Physical Education Committee were Robert McMurray (Chair), Stan Bassin, Russell Jago, John Jakicic, Preethy Kolinjivadi, Sara Mazzuto, Esther Moe, Tinker Murray and Stella Volpe. Past and present physical activity coordinators (PACs) were Tara Blackshear, Jeff Brown, Steve Bruecker, Dominic Cusimano, Kerry Lubin, Jeff McNamee, Jim Rich, Augusto Rodriguez, Carrie Speich, Amy Springer, Kampol Surapiboonchai and John Vannucci. We certify that all applicable institutional and governmental regulations concerning the ethical use of human volunteers were followed during this research.An online Appendix shows an example PE teacher handbook lesson.

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Correspondence to R G McMurray.

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Supplementary Information accompanies the paper on International Journal of Obesity website (http://www.nature.com/ijo)

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McMurray, R., Bassin, S., Jago, R. et al. Rationale, design and methods of the HEALTHY study physical education intervention component. Int J Obes 33, S37–S43 (2009). https://doi.org/10.1038/ijo.2009.115

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Keywords

  • type 2 diabetes
  • adolescents
  • physical education
  • physical activity

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