Submitted to: Preventive Medicine
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/1/2006
Publication Date: 3/1/2006
Citation: Jago, R., Baranowski, T., Baranowski, J.C., Thompson, D., Cullen, K.W., Watson, K., Liu, Y. 2006. Fit for Life Boy Scout Badge: Outcome evaluation of a troop and internet intervention. Preventive Medicine. 42(3):181-187. Interpretive Summary: A nine-week Fit for Life Badge program was developed to help Boy Scouts increase their level of physical activity. The Badge program included both a weekly troop meeting component (which took about 30 min/week) and a weekly internet component (which took from 20 to 30 min/week). The internet program included a weekly comic book with Boy Scout characters overcoming barriers to change and usual behavior change technology, e.g., goal setting. An outcome evaluation with 473 10- to 14-year -ld Scouts (from 42 troops) demonstrated that the Badge program enabled Boy Scouts to increase the light physical activity in the spring intervention but not in the fall. The findings suggest that programs promoting physical activity may need to anticipate different problems by time of the year.
Technical Abstract: Background. This study reports the results of a 9-week intervention on the physical activity levels of adolescent males. Methods. Participants were 473 10- to 14-year-old Houston Boy Scouts (42 troops), with troops randomly assigned to intervention or control conditions. Data were collected in spring (16 troops) and fall (26 troop) waves during 2003. Intervention participants received a 9-week troop and internet program to increase physical activity skills, self-efficacy, and goal-setting. Physical activity was assessed at baseline, end of the intervention (Post#1), and post-6 months (Post#2) by accelerometer. Minutes of sedentary, light, and moderate to vigorous physical activity were calculated. Repeated measure analyses were performed to test differences in physical activity over time between groups, with participants nested in troops. Results. A three-way interaction (group * time * wave) that approached significance (P = 0.051) indicated a 12-min reduction in sedentary behavior among spring intervention participants. A significant three-way interaction (P = 0.011) (group * time * wave) indicated a 12-min increase in light intensity activity among the spring intervention group. Conclusion. Participation in the Fit for Life Badge program resulted in a trend towards a small decrease in sedentary behavior and increased light intensity physical activity among spring participants only. There was no effect on moderate to vigorous physical activity.