Physical Activity

Regular physical activity has benefits across the lifespan (Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, 2nd edition). Among children, it can improve fitness, bone health, attention, and some measures of academic performance. Among adults, it can lower the risk of high blood pressure, improve mental health, reduce arthritis, and prevent weight gain. And among older adults, physical activity can reduce the risk of falling, improve balance and joint mobility, prevent weak bones and muscle loss, and delay onset of cognitive decline.

Community Preventive Services Task Force Findings

Summary Table

This summary of CPSTF findings to increase physical activity can be used as a reference, included in presentations, or shared with colleagues.

Implementation Resources

Implementation Products

Active Parks! Implementation Guide: Increasing Physical Activity Through Parks, Trails and Greenways
Developed by the National Recreation and Park Association and CDC’s Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity

Actionable Public Health Strategies to Boost Community Well-Being with Safe Routes to Parks
Developed by the Safe Routes Partnership

Active People, Healthy NationSM
This CDC initiative aims to help 27 million Americans become more physically active by 2027. The initiative promotes CPSTF-recommended strategies that work at the state and local level and includes links to data and implementation resources. The initiative is based on a foundation of inclusion and health.

Activity-Friendly Routes to Everyday Destinations
Developed by CDC’s Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity in collaboration with The Community Guide
This package of online resources is designed to help communities implement combined built environment approaches to increase physical activity. By improving and connecting routes to destinations, communities can make it easier for people to choose to be physically active.

The Active Communities Tool (ACT): An Action Planning Guide and Assessment Modules to Improve Community Built Environments to Promote Physical Activity
Developed by CDC’s Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity in collaboration with The Community Guide
This CDC tool supports cross-sector teams working within a municipality to improve built environments for physical activity. It includes an action planning guide and assessment modules

How Health and Fitness Professionals Can Further Advance the Nation’s Health by Working Across the Ecological Model
Brown DR, et al. ACSM’s Health & Fitness Journal 2023;27(4):42-50.
This article outlines how health and fitness professionals can take action in their community in support of Active People, Healthy Nation by promoting health and wellness and working collaboratively across multiple levels of an ecological model. The article highlights use of CPSTF recommendations.

Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, 2nd edition
Developed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

CDC’s Health Impact in 5 Years (HI-5) Initiative
HI-5 highlights non-clinical, community-wide approaches that have evidence reporting 1) positive health impacts, 2) results within five years, and 3) cost effectiveness and/or cost savings over the lifetime of the population or earlier. The website features links to implementation resources and success stories that can help communities get started.

School-based Programs to Increase Physical Activity

Safe Routes to School (SRTS)

Public Transportation System Introduction or Expansion

Presentations and Promotional Materials

Use these materials to share information about the CPSTF findings and Community Guide products with your community.

What Works Fact Sheets

Community Guide In Action: Stories from the Field

One Pagers

Community Guide News

Developed by The Community Guide

Presentations and Webinars

Built Environment Interventions to Increase Physical Activity: Community Preventive Services Task Force Recommendations  (October 11, 2017)
Developed by the National Collaborative on Childhood Obesity Research in collaboration with The Community Guide