258897 Men on the Move: Promoting physical activity and improving health among African American men

Monday, October 29, 2012 : 8:30 AM - 8:50 AM

Derek M. Griffith, PhD , School of Public Health, Department of Health Behavior and Health Education, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
Aisha T. Langford, MPH , School of Public Health, Department of Health Behavior & Health Education, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
Julie Ober Allen, MPH , University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
Research has shown that physical activity plays an important role in the etiology of chronic diseases including heart disease, diabetes, and cancer; all of which disproportionately affect African American men. Yet, there is a paucity of interventions and research indicating how to improve physical activity levels among this group. Men on the Move was a pilot study to increase men's physical activity levels by: 1) improving access to age-appropriate, male-focused physical activity opportunities, and 2) facilitating social support from male peers. African American men who were 35 years old or older and resided in southeast Michigan were eligible for the study. Forty-one African American men enrolled (mean age of 53.8). Groups of 5-10 men met once a week with a certified personal trainer for 10 weeks. Each meeting addressed barriers to physical activity, provided men with community resources, and incorporated activities that promoted flexibility, strength, balance and conditioning. Improvements (p < .05) were detected for the outcome measures: perceived self-efficacy to sustain physical activity, endurance, overall health status, and stress level. Physiological and fitness outcome measures improved, although not to significant levels. Whereas 40% of the men met the recommendation of 150 minutes of moderate or vigorous physical activity weekly at baseline, 68% of the men met this recommendation by the end of the project. This study showed that interventions attending to the unique gendered and social factors affecting middle-aged African American men's participation in physical activity can recruit, sustain, and improve the health of this group.

Learning Areas:
Chronic disease management and prevention
Diversity and culture
Other professions or practice related to public health
Public health or related education
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
1. Evaluate a physical activity intervention designed for African American men. 2. Identify how interventions can be targeted to address the unique gendered and social factors that influence physical activity levels among middle-aged African American men. 3. Assess the benefits of collaboration between public health professionals, community members, and personal trainers for implementing a health intervention for African American men. 4. Describe recruitment strategies for engaging African American men in research.

Keywords: Physical Activity, African American

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I served as project director for Men on the Move and was involved in the development and implementation of the program. My background includes designing and administering public health interventions.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.