Mallory Powell

By

College: Education

Smoke-Free Campaign Strategies Used to Promote Physical Activity, Combat Obesity

Published: Aug 20, 2014

 

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Aug. 20, 2014) — In a state with high rates of tobacco use and obesity — and associated health problems — University of Kentucky researcher Melinda Ickes is exploring whether similar models of promoting community readiness to adopt health policies might be effective in addressing both risk factors.

 

Ickes' current project aims to create political and societal support for physical activity policies by building upon the best practices of a successful, evidence-based policy development approach that advanced smoke-free policies in Kentucky.

 

Specifically, Ickes and her team will test the feasibility of a community readiness assessment for promoting evidence-based physical activity polices in two rural Kentucky communities, Jackson and Perry counties. The project, supported by a pilot grant from the UK Center for Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS), will focus on policies related to the built environment (such as sidewalks), overall community design, and shared use of schools (after school hours) to increase access to safe space for physical activity.

 

An assistant professor in the UK College of Education Department of Kinesiology and Health Promotion, Ickes points to influence of the built environment on health and health behavior.

 

"Building active living environments so that physical activity is the easy choice will have significant and lasting impact on preventing obesity and reducing cardiovascular disease," says Ickes.

 

While the success of the smoke-free campaigns in changing social norms and influencing policy interventions is clear, little is known about how to create similarly impactful social movements for physical activity policy. According to Ickes, community readiness assessment is integral in influencing social movements and in tailoring the most appropriate policy development strategies for a given community.

 

"There's really been increased momentum for physical activity policy, but there's a missing piece in many communities - to assess community readiness to adopt physical activity policies."

 

The readiness assessment will include two components. First, a pre-survey will determine the evidence-based physical activity policies that a community is most ready to work on.  Second, Ickes and her team will determine a community’s stage of readiness said policies. They will then work with community partners to adapt stage-based strategies aimed to translate and disseminate knowledge, build community capacity, and build local demand for physical activity policies.  This process is translated from an evidence-based, stage-specific, tailored policy development intervention developed to promote smoke-free policy.

 

"Although this pilot project will not constitute the time needed to implement the intervention itself, there is a dire need to understand which stage-based strategies are appropriate for future physical activity policy work, particularly in rural areas," says Ickes.

 

While Ickes has always been committed to promoting positive, healthy behavior, she originally envisioned working one-on-one with individuals to increase physical activity and combat obesity. Working with her mentor, Ellen Hahn, director of the Kentucky Center for Smoke-free Policy, invigorated Ickes to work for policy changes that can have tremendous population-level impact in communities with serious health challenges.

 

"I really hadn't been exposed to policy work before coming to UK, and it's contagious to see someone so passionate about what they do," she says. "The possibly of changing an entire community really inspires me. Now I love teaching my students about the impact health that policy can have."

 

Hahn, who led the smoke-free policy campaigns that Ickes' project is based on, recognizes that the severity and implications of Kentucky's health challenges related to obesity demands a sense of urgency. 

 

“We have learned what works to promote smoke-free policy over the years. Kentucky cannot afford to reinvent the wheel when it comes to obesity prevention. This project will allow us to adapt lessons learned from tobacco prevention to promoting physical activity in rural Appalachia," Hahn says. 

 

Support from the Center for Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS) has also been integral to Ickes' project. She says that as a junior faculty member, there's a learning curve to operating grants and conducting community-engaged research, and the step-by -step support from CCTS has been wonderful.

 

"It's more than the monetary support, but support throughout the entire process," she says. "In the intake meeting, the CCTS leadership said 'We're here to support you with whatever you need-- IRB, marketing, fliers.' I was blown away. I don’t think that's something you get everywhere."

 

She is also collaborating with the Center for Excellence in Rural Health to identify community advocates to participate in the readiness assessments.

 

"If you were doing this on your own it would take years to meet people and make connections," she notes.

 

Data from this pilot project will be used to support further grant applications to develop and disseminate a best practice framework for promoting physical activity policy to reduce obesity and promote cardiovascular health at population level.The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute expressed interest in adapting the intervention to prevent obesity, and Ickes and Hahn plan to resubmit an R01 application using the preliminary data collected from this project.

 

"Without knowing how best to create political and societal support for physical activity policy, little progress will be made in advancing long-lasting, life-saving environmental changes to promote safe, accessible opportunities for physical activity, and rural communities will continue to suffer disproportionately from obesity and cardiovascular disease," says Ickes. 

 

 

MEDIA CONTACT: Mallory Powell, mallory.powell@uky.edu

mindy_and_ellen_feature.jpeg
April
 
 
 
1
LNFS Presents: Inherent Vice
Wildcat Wellness: Meditation
Successful Networking & Job Search
Tanya Habjouqa: Recent Photographs
Edward Troye: Theme & Variation
Same Difference: Michelle Grabner, Simone Leigh & Russell Maltz
Lexington Tattoo Project
Brazilian Conversation Hour
The Arboretum presents a Party for the Planet! Celebrate Kentucky's Past
Mr. PharmD Pageant 2015
Wed
2
LNFS Presents: Manakamana
LNFS Presents: Donnie Darko
National Student Exchange (NSE) Info Session
Tanya Habjouqa: Recent Photographs
Edward Troye: Theme & Variation
Same Difference: Michelle Grabner, Simone Leigh & Russell Maltz
Lexington Tattoo Project
Wildcat Wellness: Healthy Habits
SEC-ACC Virtual Career Fair
Massage on the Go #3
Thu
3
Cultural Coffee Hour
Tanya Habjouqa: Recent Photographs
Edward Troye: Theme & Variation
Same Difference: Michelle Grabner, Simone Leigh & Russell Maltz
Lexington Tattoo Project
Fri
4
Free Saturday Swing Dance Lessons
Tanya Habjouqa: Recent Photographs
Edward Troye: Theme & Variation
Same Difference: Michelle Grabner, Simone Leigh & Russell Maltz
Lexington Tattoo Project
Sat
5
Tanya Habjouqa: Recent Photographs
Edward Troye: Theme & Variation
Same Difference: Michelle Grabner, Simone Leigh & Russell Maltz
Lexington Tattoo Project
Sun
6
Wildcat Wellness: Expressions (Creative Stress Relief)
Age Friendly Community Panel
Resumes & Cover Letters that Work
Mon
7
National Student Exchange (NSE) Info Session
Wildcat Wellness: Relaxation
Tanya Habjouqa: Recent Photographs
Edward Troye: Theme & Variation
Same Difference: Michelle Grabner, Simone Leigh & Russell Maltz
Lexington Tattoo Project
Tue
8
LNFS Presents: The Godfather
Wildcat Wellness: Meditation
Internship Info Session
Tanya Habjouqa: Recent Photographs
Edward Troye: Theme & Variation
Same Difference: Michelle Grabner, Simone Leigh & Russell Maltz
Lexington Tattoo Project
Brazilian Conversation Hour
UK Remembers
SpeakBlue: Richard Sherman
Wed
9
LNFS Presents: The Shawshank Redemption
Tanya Habjouqa: Recent Photographs
Edward Troye: Theme & Variation
Same Difference: Michelle Grabner, Simone Leigh & Russell Maltz
Lexington Tattoo Project
Wildcat Wellness: Healthy Habits
From Plows to Plates: A Journey Through Kentucky Foodways
Workshop on Publishing
Teached Documentary
Thu
10
LNFS Presents: Enemy
LNFS Presents: Seven Psychopaths
Cultural Coffee Hour
Last Day to Withdraw or Reduce Course Load
Tanya Habjouqa: Recent Photographs
Edward Troye: Theme & Variation
Same Difference: Michelle Grabner, Simone Leigh & Russell Maltz
Lexington Tattoo Project
Robert C. May Photography Endowment Lecture: Julian Cox
Fri
11
Free Saturday Swing Dance Lessons
Tanya Habjouqa: Recent Photographs
Edward Troye: Theme & Variation
Same Difference: Michelle Grabner, Simone Leigh & Russell Maltz
Lexington Tattoo Project
fab-ric-ate Exhibit
Sat
12
Tanya Habjouqa: Recent Photographs
Edward Troye: Theme & Variation
Same Difference: Michelle Grabner, Simone Leigh & Russell Maltz
Lexington Tattoo Project
Kentucky's Present - Learn about the Bluegrass region of the Walk Across Kentucky and about invasive plants that threaten Kentucky landscapes
Sun
13
Wildcat Wellness: Expressions (Creative Stress Relief)
Don't Ask, Don't Tell
Get Your DIY On! Fix-It Station Demonstrations
Mon
14
Wildcat Wellness: Relaxation
Job Club - LinkedIn: Your Job Search Best Friend
Tie Dye Tuesday
#UK Kick Butts Day
Career & Major Exploration Session @ 1 p.m.
Career & Major Exploration Session @ 2 p.m.
Career & Major Exploration Session @ 3 p.m.
Take Back the Night Lexington
Tue
15
LNFS Presents: The Godfather: Part II
Wildcat Wellness: Meditation
Brazilian Conversation Hour
Career & Major Exploration Session @ 11 a.m.
Career & Major Exploration Session @ Noon
Career & Major Exploration Session @ 1 p.m.
Affrilachian Poets
Bike-In Movie: The Bicycle Thieves
Wed
16
LNFS Presents: The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Wildcat Wellness: Healthy Habits
CANCELED: Bike-In Breakfast
Human Rights in China: a panel discussion
Thu
17
LNFS Presents: North by Northwest
LNFS Presents: Raiders of the Lost Ark
Cultural Coffee Hour
Car-Free Day
Performance Conference
Audience Appeals and Performing Assistance Conference
Holi: The Indian Festival of Colors
Fri
18
Free Saturday Swing Dance Lessons
Bully Breed Awareness Walk
Spring Carnival 2015
Taste of Africa
GAYla Drag Show and Silent Auction
Sat
19
 
Sun
20
Wildcat Wellness: Expressions (Creative Stress Relief)
Floral Sculpture
Pinterest Party #3
Mon
21
Wildcat Wellness: Relaxation
Student Center "Farewell" Informational Fair
Tour de Downtown Art
Tue
22
LNFS Presents: Birdman
Wildcat Wellness: Meditation
National Student Exchange (NSE) Info Session
Brazilian Conversation Hour
Healthy Smoothie Demonstration
Ping Pong Ball Drop
Shake the Stress Fest
Wed
23
LNFS Presents: Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb
LNFS Presents: The Avengers
Wildcat Wellness: Healthy Habits
Wildcat Wrap-Up
UK Elder Care Lunch & Learn
Kentucky's Future - Plant a Tree in the Pennyrile region of the Walk Across Kentucky
Thu
24
LNFS Presents: Batman
LNFS Presents: O Brother, Where Art Thou?
Cultural Coffee Hour
Art in Bloom Weekend
Fri
25
Free Saturday Swing Dance Lessons
Network Publishing: Digital Writing in the Humanities
The Party for the Planet final event in April is Arbor Day at The Arboretum!
Art in Bloom Weekend
Raise the Chinese Dream in Kentucky
Art in Bloom Cocktail Party
Sat
26
Art in Bloom Weekend
Sun
27
Resumes & Cover Letters that Work
Wildcat Wellness: Expressions (Creative Stress Relief)
Fuel for Finals
UK Ag Equine Programs Distinguished Lecture Series
Mon
28
Wildcat Wellness: Relaxation
Be PAWsitive!
Job Club: How to Write the Perfect Resume and Cover Letter
Showcase of Undergraduate Scholars
How to Impress Your Boss: Employer Panel
Tue
29
Wildcat Wellness: Meditation
Internship Info Session
Brazilian Conversation Hour
Appalachian Research Day
Wed
30
Wildcat Wellness: Healthy Habits
Thu
 
 

Repeats every week until Thu Apr 30 2015 except Tue Mar 17 2015.
Tue, 04/28/2015

Tue, 04/28/2015

Reset Page