Recreation Management - Ideas and Solutions for Recreation, Sports & Fitness Facility Managers

Feature Story

March 2017


National Health Campaign Reaches 228,000 Youth in Three Years

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Grant Brings Outdoor Fitness Area to Park - December 2016

Alliance Recommends Actions to Improve Kids' Activity Stats - December 2016

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Report: Camping More Popular Than Ever - November 2016

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High School Sports Participation Up for 27th Consecutive Year - October 2016

National Park Service Celebrates 100 Years of Successful Partnerships - October 2016

Study Shows High Obesity Rates Among Student Athletes - September 2016

Forest Service Celebrates 100-Year-Old Campground - September 2016

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Research Shows Light Pollution's Impact on Night Sky - July 2016

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Nonprofits Aim to Boost Inclusive Fitness Opportunities - July 2016

Research Shows Benefits of Nature for Older Adults - June 2016

Destination Play Comes to Draper, Utah - June 2016

New Report Breaks Down the Data on City Parks - June 2016

Virtual Reality, Immersion & Interaction Lead Amusement Park Trends in 2016 - June 2016

National Leaders Team Up to Promote Physical Activity Plan - May 2016

Growing Economic Confidence Means More Visitors for Attractions Industry - May 2016

SHAPE America Recognizes Just Dance School of the Year - May 2016

Surgeon General Visits Gregory Gym in Austin - May 2016

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U.S. Masters Swimming Campaigns to Reduce Adult Drowning - April 2016

Grants for Urban Outdoor Recreation Available - April 2016

Physical Education Program Grant Competition Opens - April 2016

Nature Play Comes to Wildwood - March 2016

Miracle Swimming Opens First Pool Dedicated to Those With Water Fears - March 2016

Managing Concussion Risk: Communities Switch From Contact to Flag Football - March 2016

Gallup Study Looks at Long-Term Well-Being of Former Student Athletes - March 2016

Children across the country are reaping the benefits of a national out-of-school-time initiative aimed at improving childhood nutrition and increasing physical activity through local parks and recreation. Now in its third year, The National Recreation and Park Association's (NRPA) Commit to Health campaign, which utilizes the Healthy Eating and Physical Activity standards first adopted by the National AfterSchool Association, has been implemented by 1,250 park and recreation sites nationally—with an impact on more than 228,000 youth enrolled in out-of-school-time programming.

In partnership with the Alliance for a Healthier Generation and Partnership for a Healthier America, NRPA is working closely with its members to ensure children everywhere have access to healthy foods and physical fitness opportunities during out-of-school time. Data verified by a third-party independent verifier demonstrates the three-year success of the Commit to Health campaign in encouraging park and recreation sites to implement the HEPA standards as part of their out-of-school-time programming. The data shows that of the sites that reported:

  • 85 percent of sites serve fruits and vegetables at every meal.
  • 95 percent of sites provide drinking water at no cost.
  • 82 percent of sites prohibit full-calorie soda, sports and juice drinks.
  • 86 percent of sites offer nutrition education that is evidence-based.
  • 97 percent of sites ensure physical activity takes place outdoors.
  • 97 percent of sites offer 30 minutes of physical activity in half-day programs or 60 minutes of physical activity in full-day programs.
  • 90 percent of sites limit digital device time.

"NRPA is proud to lead this nationwide effort in helping children achieve a healthier and more active lifestyle," said Kellie May, NRPA director of Health and Wellness. "Our three-year success is a testament to the dedication of our members who make health and wellness a priority in the communities they serve—especially during out-of-school time. We look forward to the continued success of this campaign and encourage others to join us in creating a healthier America."

"Parents struggle to help their children achieve a minimum of 60 minutes of activity each day and to eat more fruits and veggies. Partners like NRPA—focused on education, access to healthier foods and water, safe places to play—are helping ensure all kids grow up at a healthy weight," said Lawrence A. Soler, PHA president and CEO.

Park and recreation agencies are one of the largest providers of out-of-school-time programming. Eighty percent of agencies provide summer camps, while 50 percent provide afterschool programs, and 31 percent provide before-school programs. Any agency not currently enrolled in the Commit to Health campaign is encouraged to take the Commit to Health pledge. For more information, visit www.nrpa.org/committohealth.