the Active for Life Program Office
Tactics and Tools
Active for Life® E-Newsletter Update is produced
monthly by the Active for Life® National Program
Office at The Texas A&M University System Health
Science Center School of Rural Public Health. To include
information, contact Brigid McHugh Sanner at firstname.lastname@example.org
or call 214-244-4186. This program is funded by a grant
from The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation®.
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the Active for Life® National Program Office
Partner to Get
Active for Life® has been designated by the
President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports
(PCPFS) as a 50th Anniversary Partner to Get America Moving!
Through the partnership, Active for Life will join
other PCPFS partner organizations to promote physical activity,
fitness and sports throughout 2006.
First Year Results Published
Results of the First Year of Active for Life®: Translation
of 2 Evidence-Based Physical Activity Programs for Older
Adults Into Community Settings appears online at http://www.ajph.org/.
The study is available through the American Journal of Public
Health’s First Look. AJPH published the research May
Learning Network Project
“Many communities want to offer better programming
and/or environments for healthy living, but are often unsure
of best practices, or how to implement best practices programs,”
notes Active for Life director Marcia Ory, PhD,
MPH. To address this need, a Learning Network has been established
in coordination with the AFL National Program Office. Funding
for the initiative has been provided by The Robert Wood
Johnson Foundation, leveraging with other partners such
as the National Blueprint, the Healthy Aging Research Network,
and the EPA Aging Initiative. “This is a terrific
opportunity to share the knowledge and experiences that
have been gained from Active for Life and other
programs that address the needs of mid-life and older adults,”
Dr. Ory said. The project will be managed by Cathy Liles,
MPH. She can be reached at email@example.com.
Older Americans Act Moves
to House Floor
The reauthorization of the Older Americans Act (H.R. 5293),
also known as the Senior Independence Act of 2006, is ready
to move to the House floor and may come up for a vote in
June. Meanwhile, the Senate bill is still being drafted.
To link to the bill click here http://edworkforce.house.gov/issues/109th/education/oa/hr5293sub.PDF.
Congratulations to OASIS
The OASIS Institute’s Intergenerational Tutoring Program
is a recipient of the Metlife Foundation’s 2006 Awards
of Achievement in Older Volunteer Program Management. The
OASIS Intergenerational Tutoring Program is one of several
programs being recognized for achievement in recruitment,
training, retention and recognition of older adults. Congratulations
A Total Commitment Conference.
July 13-15, 2006. Omaha, NE. Designed for physical education,
recreation, and sport professionals who work with individuals
with disabilities. For information go to http://www.unocoe.unomaha.edu/atc/.
National Association of Area
Agencies of Aging (N4A) Annual Conference. August
6-10, 2006. Chicago, IL. For information go to http://www.n4a.org/2006conf/chicago2006.cfm.
Pro Walk/Pro Bike Conference.
September 5-8, 2006. Madison, WI. Sponsored by the National
Center for Bicycling & Walking, the theme is Making
Connections. For information, go to http://www.bikewalk.org/conference/index.html.
2006 National Health Promotion
Conference. September 12-14, 2006. Atlanta, GA.
Presented by CDC's Coordinating Center for Health Promotion,
the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health
Promotion, the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental
Disabilities, and the Office of Genomics and Disease Prevention.
National Home and Community
Based Services Waiver Conference (in conjunction with the
Minnesota Aging and Disabilities Odyssey). October
1-4, 2006. Minneapolis, MN. For information go to http://www.nasua.org/waiverconference/.
4th Annual ICAA Conference:
Active Aging 2006. November 15-17, 2006. Mandalay
Bay Convention Center, Las Vegas, NV. Information is available
Tactics and Tools
Keeping Summer Safe and Healthy
Here are a few sensible summer tips to pass along to older
adults who are starting or maintaining physical activity
programs during the summer months.
should be used by adults and children when outdoors for
prolonged periods of time. For eyeglass wearers, polycarbonate
lenses, which are thin and shatterproof, offer protection
from ultraviolet radiation," says Dr. V. Vinod Mootha,
associate professor of ophthalmology at UT Southwestern
Medical Center in Dallas. The surface of the eye and the
cornea are particularly vulnerable to the sun's rays.
"Excessive exposure may increase the risk for the
formation of a fleshy tissue over the cornea, some forms
of cataract and possibly macular degeneration," Dr.
Mootha says. UV-B exposure is higher on sunny days (especially
at noon) and low-ozone days. (Source: UT Southwestern
can range from a relatively minor problem like heat cramps
to a more serious condition like heat stroke, which can
be fatal. Heat stroke occurs when a person can no longer
perspire and his or her temperature control mechanism
stops working. It's not just temperature that can cause
heat stress. Humidity and direct sunlight can also get
people into trouble. The combination of these factors
is referred to as the 'heat index,' which measures the
outside heat stress on the body.
should be reduced or eliminated, done indoors in an
air-conditioned facility, or rescheduled to a cool time
of day. Persons at risk, especially the elderly, should
stay in the coolest place available out of the sun or
in an air-conditioned room. Plenty of fluids are important,
even if a person does not feel thirsty. Caffeinated
beverages should be minimized in favor of water and
sports drinks. (Source: New York-Presbyterian Hospital)
On hot summer days
with poor air quality, those with lung or heart disease
should exercise indoors, preferably in an air-conditioned
room. If people must go outdoors, the early morning or
evening is best. Epidemiologic studies have linked air
pollutants to harmful effects on the heart and lungs,
to emergency hospital admissions, and to deaths. The pollutants
affect the lungs by causing inflammation or irritation
of the airway lining. In addition to fine particulates
- which are emitted by the diesel engines of trucks and
buses - the two most significant environmental culprits
are carbon monoxide and ozone. Carbon monoxide arises
from cigarette smoke and automobile exhaust. Ozone results
from the interaction of sunlight and chemicals found in
car exhaust. Ozone adversely affects a person's breathing
pattern and causes the airways in the lungs to become
smaller and more resistant to oxygen exchange. Because
of ozone, a person working out has difficulty taking deep
breaths and has to breathe faster. As a result, the exercise
becomes more stressful and difficult. (Source: New York-Presbyterian
Education on vision impairment
A workbook and lecture course, Fitness Training for
Clients with Visual Impairment by L. Penny Rosenblum,
PhD and Gwen Hyatt, MS, explains exercise design considerations
for those with vision loss. The course is available through
the International Council on Active Aging. See http://www.icaa.cc/Education/Fitnessforvisual.htm
Calories = Better Aging
The lifelong habit of trimming just a few calories from
the daily diet can do more than slim the waistline - a new
study shows it may help lessen the effects of aging. Scientists
from the University of Florida's Institute on Aging have
found that eating a little less food and exercising a little
more over a lifespan can reduce or even reverse aging-related
cell and organ damage in rats. The discovery, described
in the May journal of Antioxidants and Redox Signaling,
builds on recent research that has shown a more drastic
20 percent to 40 percent cut in calories slows aging damage.
The UF findings indicate even small reductions in calories
could have big effects on health and shed light on the molecular
process responsible for the phenomenon, which until now
has been poorly understood.
Seniors May Interpret the
Question "How's your health?" Differently
When healthcare providers ask, "How's your health?",
Caucasian and African-American adults tend to respond differently,
largely because of educational background, according to
a study presented at the American Geriatrics Society's 2006
annual scientific meeting. In the study, researchers at
the University of California at San Francisco studied more
than 16,000 adults age 50 and older, who were surveyed and
asked two questions: "Do you consider yourself primarily
white or Caucasian or black or African-American?" and
"Would you say your health is excellent, very good,
good, fair or poor?"
The researchers compared the number
of deaths in each group four years after the survey. Self-rated
health was a better predictor of four-year mortality among
Caucasians than among African-Americans, the researchers
found. Fewer than five percent of Caucasians who rated their
health as excellent, for example, died within the four year
period. But roughly eight percent of African-Americans who
rated their health as excellent died within that period.
When the researchers took into account the educational backgrounds
of the older adults, however, they found that education
accounted for much of the difference in the association
between self-rated health and four-year mortality between
Caucasians and African-Americans. Since health care providers
and researchers often ask patients some version of "How's
your health?" they should be aware that the question
"may have different meanings for different subjects,"
conclude the researchers.
Home Exercise for Persons
with Parkinson’s Disease
Results of a study of the effects of home exercise on the
motor performance in patients with Parkinson’s disease
suggest that if persons with Parkinson’s Disease are
taught individualized and detailed home exercises by a physiotherapist,
there is a statistically significant clinical improvement
in their motor performance over an eight-week period. Read
the entire abstract at http://www.ncpad.org/fitt/fact_sheet.php?sheet=416.
(Source: Clinical Rehabilitation, 19, 870-877)
Poor Physical Function Might
Signal Risk for Dementia
In a population-based longitudinal study involving 2,288
participants older than 65 years without dementia at baseline,
researchers investigated whether physical function was associated
with incident dementia and Alzheimer disease (AD). Over
six years of follow-up, the age-specific incidence rate
of dementia was 53.1 per 1000 person-years for participants
who scored 10 points or lower on the 16-point performance-based
physical function test at baseline compared with 17.4 per
1000 person-years for those who scored higher than 10 points.
Lower levels of physical performance were associated with
an increased risk of dementia and AD. The study suggests
that poor physical function may precede the onset of dementia
and AD and higher levels of physical function may be associated
with a delayed onset. The study was published in the Archives
of Internal Medicine May 22, 2006. More information
is available at http://archinte.ama-assn.org/.
Walking ability predicts
health or disability
The ability to walk a quarter mile can be used to assess
risk in older adults, according to a study that examined
walking as a testing protocol for community dwelling adults.
A group of 2,680 community-dwelling white and African-American
men and women ages 70 to 79 were screened for absence of
heart disease. All of the participants reported no difficulty
walking a quarter of a mile, climbing one flight of stairs
without resting or performing basic activities of daily
living. They were asked to walk at a consistent pace as
quickly as they could 10 times along a 40-meter corridor,
equivalent to about a quarter mile. The 400-meter walk was
completed by 86 percent. After six years of follow-up, those
excluded from the test because of heart disease symptoms
or those who stopped the walk had significantly higher death
rates. Those who could not complete the walk had significantly
more heart-related incidents and a significantly higher
risk of mobility limitations and related disabilities. Of
those who did complete the walk, people with the lowest
functional capacity (walk time greater than 362 seconds)
had a higher risk of death than those with the fastest walk
times of less than 290 seconds. The study was published
in the May 3, 2006 issue of JAMA. For more information,
go to http://www.jama.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/abstract/295/17/2018.
Baby Boomer Boo-Boos
According the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, sports-related
injuries among baby boomers increased about 33 percent from
1991 to 1998. They amounted to $18.7 billion in medical
costs in 1998 alone.
Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) Local Initiative Funding
Local Initiative Funding Partners is a partnership between
RWJF and local grantmakers that seeks to fund promising,
original projects to significantly improve the health of
vulnerable people in their communities. Grantmakers propose
a funding partnership by nominating community initiatives
that offer creative solutions to critical health or healthcare
problems. To be eligible, projects must be new, innovative,
collaborative, and community-based. Significant program
expansions, such as a major expansion into new regions or
to new populations, may also be considered. Local funding
partners must be willing to work with each grantee to obtain
sufficient dollar-for-dollar matching funds throughout the
Deadline for applications is July 6, 2006.
Community Participation in
The Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research/NIH/DHHS
is sponsoring support for research on health promotion,
disease prevention, and health disparities that is jointly
conducted by communities and researchers.
For more information, go to http://grants1.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-05-026.html
or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
National Gardening Association
24th Annual Youth Garden Grant Program
The National Gardening Association and Home Depot announced
the 24th annual Youth Garden Grant Program. Schools, youth
groups, community centers, camps, clubs, treatment facilities,
and intergenerational groups are eligible. Applicants must
plan to garden in 2007 with at least fifteen children between
the ages of three and 18. Applicants should demonstrate
a child-centered plan that emphasizes children/youth learning
and working in an outdoor garden. Each winning program will
receive educational materials from NGA and a gift card (amount
to be determined) from Home Depot. Information is available
Deadline for applications: November 1, 2006.
Balance Bar Invites Applications
for Community Grants
Balance Bar Community Grants provide support to organizations
to pursue physical activities that enrich their members'
lives. The applicant and the majority of beneficiaries of
grant monies must be 18 years or older. Grants are available
to non-profit organizations such as runners’ clubs,
trails conferences, parks and recreation departments, athletics
programs and leagues, or other groups that enhance physical
health while enriching the lives of those in the community.
Organizations can apply for a grant amount ranging from
$1,000 to $25,000. Information is available at http://www.balance.com/grants/GrantTemplate.html?type=2&entryid=2&m=modules/rules.
Deadline for applications is August 30, 2006.
Improving the Quality of
Life of Older Americans
The Retirement Research Foundation (RRF) is committed to
supporting programs that improve the quality of life for
older Americans, and has invested more than $115 million
to help build a network of innovative and skilled individuals
and institutions addressing aging and retirement issues.
For more information, go to the RRF http://www.rrf.org///forapplicants/programguide.html.
Deadline for receipt of requests is August 1, 2006.
College Station, Texas 77843-1266