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NHIS - Adult Physical Activity Information

Historical Context

Selected Milestones in Physical Activity Research, Promotion and Surveillance

 

1956 The U.S. President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports was established. The Council, an advisory committee of volunteers, serves as a catalyst to promote health, physical activity, fitness and enjoyment through participation in physical activity and sports (1).
1957 Tecumseh Community Health Study, a comprehensive health study of residents of Tecumseh, Michigan was initiated. This study included an extensive set of questions about physical activity, asked in a highly structured interview. Questions included intensity, frequency and duration of activities (expressed in terms of hours per week), averaged over one year (2, 3).
1965 Health and Ways of Living Study, a community-based study conducted in Alameda County, California, was initiated. This study included questions on a limited number of physical activities using a self-administered questionnaire. The physical activity questions were introduced by a phrase indicating that the respondent was being asked about things people do in their “free time” — the precursor to the widely used concept of "leisure-time physical activity." The Alameda Study questionnaire also included the question "Are you more physically active or less active than most people your age?" — which first appeared in the NHIS in 1975 and continued periodically throughout the following 25 years (4).
1966 The International Symposium on Physical Activity and Cardiovascular Health was held in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (5).
1975 The National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) first included questions on physical activity and sports in a supplement questionnaire and shortly thereafter became one of the major surveillance tools for monitoring changes in the prevalence of physical activity among U.S. adults (6).
1978 The Minnesota Leisure Time Activity (LTA) questionnaire was developed for use in a structured interview setting (7). The Minnesota LTA questionnaire asked about participation in specific physical activities or exercises during the last 12 months. For each activity reported, respondents were asked to identify the month(s) in which they engaged in the activity, the number of times per month, and the duration per occasion. Intensity codes were assigned for each activity, an approach adopted by the NHIS in the 1980's.
1979 Healthy People. Surgeon General's Report on Health Promotion and Disease Prevention was published. This was the first report by the Office of the Surgeon General to identify health promotion and disease prevention (including physical activity) as national priorities (8, 9).
1980 Promoting Health, Preventing Disease. Objectives for the Nation was published (10). This was the Nation’s first set of national health objectives, which established a target date of 1990, and included objectives for increasing physical activity in the U.S. population.
1984 Workshop on Epidemiologic and Public Health Aspects of Physical Activity and Exercise, Atlanta, Georgia (11).
1988 International Conference on Exercise, Fitness and Health was held in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (12)
1990 Healthy People 2000 Health Objectives for the Nation was published (13). This was the second set of national health objectives, which established a target date of 2000, and included objectives for increasing physical activity.
1995 NIH Consensus Conference: Physical Activity and Cardiovascular Health was held in Bethesda, Maryland (14).
1996 U.S. Surgeon General's Report on Physical Activity and Health was published (15). This was the first Surgeon General’s report to focus specifically on physical activity.
1998  International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ) developed and tested (16).
2000 Healthy People 2010 Health Objectives for the Nation was published (17). This was the third set of national health objectives, which established a target date of 2010, and included objectives for increasing physical activity.
2000 The International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ) Evaluation Study was undertaken (18).
2002 World Health Organization (WHO) established “Move for Health Day” as part of World Health Day and developed the Global Physical Activity Questionnaire (GPAQ) (19). This effort is designed to promote physical activity worldwide.
2002 World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) collaboration in development of policies related to physical activity (20).
2004 Global Strategy for Diet, Physical Activity, and Health was adopted by the World Health Organization (21)
2005 The Dietary Guidelines for Americans first included guidelines for physical activity (22).
2006 The First International Congress on Physical Activity and Health was held in Atlanta, Georgia (23).
2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans were issued (24).
2010

National Physical Activity Plan - Launched May 3, 2010. Washington, D.C.

Healthy People 2020 Objectives for the Nation - Launched Dec 2, 2010. This is the fourth set of national health objectivies and includes objectives for increasing physical activity in the U.S. population.

 

 

 

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