The Active by Choice Today (ACT) Trial to Increase Physical Activity

2014-08-27 03:17:25 | BioPortfolio


The increasing prevalence of obesity in U.S. children and adolescents is a major health threat to our society, especially among minority and low social economic status (SES) populations. During adolescence physical activity (PA) decreases and is likely an important contributor to the increasing trend in childhood obesity rates. Little evidence suggests that school-based curriculum interventions lead to increases in overall PA. Thus, this proposal will evaluate the efficacy of an innovative motivational and behavioral skills after-school program for promoting increases PA among underserved adolescents (e.g., minorities, low SES). The motivational plus behavioral skills intervention is consistent with Self-Determination (Motivation) Theory and Social Cognitive Theory in that it emphasizes increasing intrinsic motivation and behavioral skills for PA. Adolescents in the intervention take part in developing the program, selecting physical activities that generate fun and interest, and generating their own coping strategies for making effective PA changes during a videotaped session. Preliminary data from our group demonstrates the feasibility of the motivational plus behavioral skills PA program for increasing moderate-to-vigorous PA (MVPA) in underserved adolescents in South Carolina. The proposed project will use a school-based nested cohort design to evaluate efficacy of a 17-week motivational plus behavioral skills program versus typical after-school program (general health education only) on increasing PA in underserved adolescents. Twenty-four middle schools (70 6th graders per school; N=1,680), located in South Carolina will be randomly assigned to one of two after-school programs. The study employs a nested cohort design, with schools, rather than individuals assigned to condition and will be analyzed using repeated measures analysis of covariance techniques as outlined by Murray. We will also examine psychosocial variables (PA self-efficacy, self-concept, motivation, social support, and enjoyment) as potential mediators of the intervention on changes in MVPA using regression and structural equation modeling techniques. This study will address an important public health problem that will have implications for decreasing obesity in underserved adolescents.

Study Design

Allocation: Randomized, Control: Active Control, Endpoint Classification: Efficacy Study, Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment, Masking: Single Blind (Outcomes Assessor), Primary Purpose: Prevention




Physical Activity Program, General Health Program


University of South Carolina
South Carolina
United States




University of South Carolina

Results (where available)

View Results


Published on BioPortfolio: 2014-08-27T03:17:25-0400

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