On September 1, the Partnership for a Healthier America and the Let’s Move! campaign announced the release of seven “design filters” to serve as guidelines for creating physical activity programs that provide active and positive experiences for as many children as possible. Active Living Research applauds this announcement and heartily supports the application of research, expert consultation, and careful thought behind these seven filters. According to these guidelines, every youth physical activity program should be:
- Designed to provide universal access
- Age appropriate
- Geared toward physical activity recommendations on dosage (how much) and duration (how long)
- Focused on motivation and incentives
- Able to track progress, individually and for the group
- Led by well-trained coaches and mentors
These guidelines are an important new tool that Let's Move! can use to get America's youth more active and prevent childhood obesity. We encourage practitioners, advocates, and policy-makers involved with physical activity programming to consider how their efforts can implement each of these guidelines. Just think of how many millions of hours of enjoyment children will have and billions of kilocalories will be expended as these guidelines lead to more active youth sports, dance, after school, and in-school programs.