From the Editor-in-Chief . . .
National surveys indicate most individuals do not reach physical activity guidelines and this is more pronounced in those with disabilities. Whether physically or intellectually disabled, access to transportation, facilities, programs, and trained health and fitness personnel represent formidable barriers. Additionally, individuals with disabilities are often isolated from their peers diminishing the opportunities for interaction and the social aspects of physical activity. In the April 15 issue of TJACSM Ptomey and colleagues explore remote delivery of physical activity in this underserved population using trained health educators and real-time video conferencing in adults with Down syndrome.
Eight to ten individuals were randomized to 30-minute exercise sessions delivered by a health educator using interactive video conferencing either 1 or 2 times per week. Interestingly, the health educator could communicate with the participants and the participants could likewise communicate with the health educator and other participants as well, thus providing a group atmosphere and group support. To obtain objective data on levels of exercise participation, Fitbits were used to gather minutes of individual activity and heart rates. Participation in exercise sessions was excellent and 28 of the 30 minutes of exercise reached the moderate to vigorous physical activity category. Although larger trials are necessary to confirm these findings, removing barriers using remote technology shows considerable promise as a means of increasing physical activity for individuals with Down syndrome and likely other disabilities.
The Translational Journal of The American College of Sports Medicine encourages submission of studies that impact the translation of science and policy to communities and populations.
Joseph E. Donnelly, EdD, FACSM