CALL FOR ABSTRACTS — APHA's 2019 Annual Meeting and Expo

Physical Activity

Meeting theme: Creating the Healthiest Nation: For science. For action. For health

Submission Deadline: Saturday, February 23, 2019

The American Public Health Association (APHA) Physical Activity Section is comprised of over 640 physical activity practitioners, researchers, advocates, partners, and students committed to advocating for the importance of physical activity in public health and public policy. Our section began as a Special Interest Group (SPIG) in 2009 and was formally recognized as a full Member Section in 2012. A strong, engaged, and growing leadership team, including 12 distinct committees, guides the development and operation of the Section as a service to all section and APHA members. In 2017, the Physical Activity Section was recognized as a National Public Health Week All-Star and received the Outstanding Collaborator Award. We look forward to continuing to build a movement around physical activity with your help in 2019. We welcome submissions related to all areas of physical activity and public health; however, abstracts that report impact and outcome evaluation results of community-based physical activity interventions for vulnerable populations and/or highlight the theme of the 2019 meeting will be given priority. Topics of particular interest for 2019 are listed below; nevertheless, general topics in the area of physical activity and public health will also be considered.
  • Built environment and active transportation research to improve physical activity or reduce sedentary behavior
  • Community clinical linkages to physical activity, including physical activity research and innovations with demonstrated success in reduction of health disparities and/or evidence
  • Physical activity among rural populations
  • Physical activity among the college student population
  • Physical activity and aging
  • Physical activity and disability
  • Physical activity epidemiology
    Including the science of physical activity measurement and its relation to the Physical Activity Guidelines; null findings and what they teach us; advances in science and methodology in physical activity research
  • Physical activity research among veterans, military personnel, and military families
  • Physical activity, public health nursing, and allied health professions
    Including physical activity surveillance or interventions among healthcare providers, the role healthcare professionals play in physical activity education and promotion, and the impact of nursing and allied health professions (i.e., OT, PT) on physical activity outcomes.
  • Progress toward national goals surrounding physical activity participation, reduction of sedentary behavior, and development of activity-supporting communities, with a focus on physical activity policy
  • Research practice partnerships: Dissemination and implementation of science for the public
  • Study design for community-based research
    Innovative designs to meet real world demands (including SMART designs, n of 1 designs, just in time adaptive interventions, ecological momentary assessment of physical activity, etc.)
  • The relationship of physical activity with health equity and related outcomes
    Including physical activity research and interventions in at-risk populations (i.e., disabled and aging populations; youth; immigrants, migrant, or international populations; medically complex populations; individuals living with mental illness), or with respect to environmental health, rural health, and/or gender/identity
Abstract Format:

Abstracts should be no less than 200 words and no more than 250 words.

Please include the following elements in each abstract:

  • Type of presentation preferred (oral, poster, or no preference)
  • Three (3) measurable objectives
  • For consideration of the Student Presentation Awards, please indicate if the first author is a student (see eligibility below)
  • Introduction or Background: Study objectives, hypothesis, or a description of the problem;
  • Methods: Study design, including a description of participants, procedures, measures, and appropriate analyses (for both quantitative and qualitative research);
  • Results: Specific results in summary form; and
  • Conclusion/Discussion: Description of the main outcome of the study and importance/significance of the work. 

Abstract submissions can contain no mention of commercial entities or authors/faculty for purposes of a masked review. 

Submission and Review: 

All abstracts must be submitted electronically using the APHA Meeting website by the date published on the APHA website for the Physical Activity Section. Late, faxed, and email submissions cannot be accepted. APHA will send email notices of acceptance to abstract authors in early June 2019. All abstracts are subject to masked peer review by at least three reviewers. Please remove any references to a specific institution in the body of the abstract to permit masked review and ensure fairness. By submitting an abstract proposal, the author(s) agree that, if accepted, the paper will be presented as scheduled. 

**Please note: per APHA policy, if unable to present, presenters must withdraw submissions by August 1, 2019, in order to avoid a three year probationary period.**

APHA Physical Activity Section 2019 Student Presentation Awards

Awards will be given for the most outstanding student oral and poster presentations that are submitted to the PA Section and related to at least one of the Physical Activity Section topics of interest (please see above) in the Call for Abstracts.

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Student member (undergraduate, masters, doctoral) of the APHA Physical Activity Section at the time of submission.
  • Student should be the first author on the abstract.
  • Abstract should be based on independent research of the student.

The awards committee will select up to three nominees for each for the oral and poster presentation award. A panel of Physical Activity Section Leadership Team members will attend the poster sessions to judge these students’ presentations.

The presentations will be rated on a set of criteria including: presentation style, content, quality of contribution to the literature/impact, quality of data and methodology. The nominees will be recognized at the Physical Activity Section social event at the annual meeting. The award winners will be announced online at the end of the conference.

All student submissions will be considered for these awards. No separate submission is necessary, but please indicate if the first author is a student, as noted above under Abstract Format.

APHA Physical Activity Section 2019 Steven P. Hooker Research Award

An award will be given for the most outstanding research abstract that is submitted to the PA Section and is related to at least one of the Physical Activity Section topics of interest (please see above) in the Call for Abstracts. 

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Member (Regular, Student, Early Career Professional, Retired, Special Health Worker) of the APHA Physical Activity Section
  • Candidate should be the first author on the abstract.

The awards committee will rate the abstracts on a set of criteria including: content, quality of contribution to the literature/impact, quality of data and methodology. The award winner will be announced prior to the annual meeting and recognized at the Physical Activity Section social event at the annual meeting.

All submissions to the Physical Activity Section will be considered and will be based upon both abstract scores and the above noted judging criteria.

Continuing Education Credit

APHA values the ability to provide continuing education credit to physicians, nurses, health educators, veterinarians, and those certified in public health at its annual meeting. Please complete all required information when submitting an abstract so members can claim credit for attending your session. These credits are necessary for members to keep their licenses and credentials.

For a session to be eligible for Continuing Education Credit, each presenter must provide:

  • An abstract free of trade and/or commercial product names
  • At least one MEASURABLE outcomes (DO NOT USE “To understand” or “To learn” as objectives, they are not measureable). Examples of Acceptable Measurable Action Words:  Explain, Demonstrate, Analyze, Formulate, Discuss, Compare, Differentiate, Describe, Name, Assess, Evaluate, Identify, Design, Define or List.
  • A signed Conflict of Interest (Disclosure) form with a relevant Qualification Statement. See an example of an acceptable Qualification Statement on the online Disclosure form.

Contact Mighty Fine at if you have any questions concerning continuing education credit. Please contact the program planner for all other questions.


Program Planner Contact Information:

Derek C. Herrmann, MPH(c)
Purdue Polytechnic Institute
Purdue Research Foundation
Knoy Hall of Technology, Room 465
401 N. Grant Street
West Lafayette, IN 4907
Phone: 765-494-0887

Noël Barengo, MD, MPH, PhD
Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine
Florida International University
1200 SW 8th Street, AHC2
Miami, FL 33199
Phone: 305-348-0570