Special Announcement: Alliance Launches New National Physical Activity Plan

New U.S. National Physical Activity Plan Focuses on Achievements, Two New Sectors and Need for Momentum

Washington, DC – The new U.S. National Physical Activity Plan (NPAP) was unveiled Wednesday, April 20, 2016 at the National Press Club, building upon the initial plan that the NPAP Alliance released in 2010 as a roadmap for actions supporting and encouraging physical activity among all Americans.

In presenting the 2016 plan, Russell Pate, Ph.D., chairman of the nonprofit NPAP Alliance, said that “because of this public-private initiative, we are multiple steps closer to our initial vision: one day, all Americans will be physically active, and they will live, work and play in environments that encourage and support regular physical activity.”

Jim Whitehead, CEO of the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), concurred, citing recent advances including:

  • 2012 – The Lancet medical journal – Publishes special Issue on Physical Activity
  • 2013 – HHS Physical Activity Guidelines Mid-Course Report on Strategies to Increase Physical Activity Among Youth
  • 2015 – U.S. Surgeon General – Issues Call to Action on Walking and Walkable Communities
  • 2015 – Elementary and Secondary Education Act – Establishes Physical Education as a central component of a student’s well-rounded education
  • 2015 – Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act – Requires all National Highway System roadways be designed for safe access to all modes of transportation
  • 2015 – NIH Common Fund – Provides markedly increased funding for research on Molecular Transducers of Physical Activity in Humans

Pate said two new societal sectors – faith-based settings and sport – were added in the 2016 National Plan update. “The plan is a living document that will be updated periodically to reflect specific evidence-informed approaches designed to promote physical activity through actions taken in each of nine societal sectors. Strategies are broad approaches to be achieved through implementation of specific tactics that our experts highly recommend,” Pate said.

The nine societal sectors (* new in the updated plan) include:

  • Business and Industry
  • Community Recreation, Fitness and Parks
  • Education
  • Faith-based Settings *
  • Health Care
  • Mass Media
  • Public Health
  • Sport *
  • Transportation, Land Use and Community Design

“The plan was informed by new knowledge, some of which was the product of evolving professional practice,” said Pate. “But future enhancements to the plan will require a growing body of knowledge, fed by an expanding physical activity-public health research enterprise. Accordingly, the National Physical Activity Plan Alliance calls on public, nonprofit and private research funding agencies to make greater investments in research that will generate the knowledge needed to increase physical activity in communities across the U.S.”

The full NPAP report can be viewed and downloaded at www.physicalactivityplan.org