The mission of the PAPREN Rural Active Living Work Group is to build a multi-disciplinary network of researchers and practitioners from academia, non-profit organizations, government, and other funding agencies to: 1) increase the amount and quality of active living research and evaluation in rural areas, and 2) facilitate the development and implementation of evidence-informed physical activity practices and policies specific to rural communities.
The strength of our Work Group has been in our ability to collaborate to get work done. To that end, we see our role as three-fold: (1) generate new ideas and collaborations, (2) maintain and foster connections across researchers and practitioners committed to advancing health in rural communities, and (3) complete a core research project each year. We will place an emphasis on facilitating the development and implementation of research ideas and collaborations within our Work Group and with the other PAPREN Work Groups. We welcome additional collaborators on our core research projects, which are listed below:
2020 – Submit manuscript quantifying the factors associated with physical activity guideline prevalence in rural counties (“Positive Deviance”), led by Christiaan Abildso
2021 – Rural comprehensive planning project, led by Lisa Charron from University of Wisconsin – Madison; Rural Comp Plan scorecard, and/or Assessing state policies that mandate comprehensive planning for a) health requirements and b) minimum size of municipality required to do planning (i.e., rurality)
2022 – Rural libraries/physical activity project – led by Noah Lenstra from University of North Carolina Greensboro/Let’s Move in Libraries; specific topic “Understanding rural libraries as partners in the promotion of physical activity: Evidence from a content analysis of rural library Facebook posts made in Summer 2022”
2023 – Physical activity promotion through SNAP-ed programs project – led by Jessica Stroope from Louisiana State University; specific topic: A Multi-State Perspective on Advancing Active Living Contexts through the Cooperative Extension System.
2023 – Rural Active Living: A Call to Action 2.0 – led by Renée Umstattd Meyer from Baylor University; an update of the 2016 paper that outlines the evidence base and key scientific gaps for an ecological model of active living for rural populations.
Project leader: Christiaan Abildso, PhD, MPH, Associate Professor, West Virginia University School of Public Health
Abildso CG, Perry CK, Jacobs L, Umstattd Meyer MR, McClendon ME, Edwards MB, Roemmich JN, Ramsey Z*, Stout MR. What sets physically active rural communities apart from less active ones? A comparative case study of three US counties. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2021;18(20):10574. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182010574.
Abildso CG, Daily SM, Umstattd Meyer MR, Edwards MB, Jacobs L, McClendon ME, Perry CK, Roemmich JN. Environmental factors associated with physical activity in rural US counties. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2021;18(14):7688. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18147688.
Abildso CG, Daily SM, Umstattd Meyer MR, Perry CK, Eyler A. (2022, May). Prevalence of Meeting Aerobic, Strength, and Combined Physical Activity Guidelines by Rural-Urban Status and Region — United States 2020. Poster presented at the 2022 International Society for Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity (ISBNPA) Annual Meeting. Phoenix, AZ.
Project leader: Lisa Charron, MS, MPH, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies
Charron LM, Milstein C, Moyers SI, Abildso CG, Chriqui JF. Do state comprehensive planning statutes address physical activity? Implications for rural communities. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021;18(22):12190. doi:10.3390/ijerph182212190
Charron LM, Milstein C, Moyers SI, Abildso CG, Chriqui JF. Research brief: Comprehensive planning statutes and physical activity: Implications for rural communities. Published online 2022.
PAPREN Emerging Leaders Showcase: Charron L. Do state comprehensive planning statutes address physical activity? Implications for rural communities. Presented at: PAPREN Grand Rounds: Emerging Leaders Showcase; April 27, 2022.
Project leader: Noah Lenstra, PhD, Associate Professor of Library and Information Science at the University of North Carolina Greensboro
Project leader: Jessica Stroope, MPH, Louisiana State University AgCenter
Project leader: Eugene C. Fitzhugh, PhD, Associate Professor, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Department of Kinesiology, Recreation, and Sport Studies
Factors Associated with Leisure-time Bicycling among Adults in the United States: An Urban-Rural Comparison. Oral presentation at the 2022 American Public Health Association Annual Meeting. (Nov, 2022, Boston)
Project leader: Demetrius Abshire, PhD, RN, Assistant Professor, University of South Carolina College of Nursing
Abshire, D. A., Pickett, A. C., & Bucklin, R. (2021, May). Insights into Rural Physical Activity Programming. Poster presented at the 2021 National Rural Health Association Annual Conference. Virtual conference
Project leader: Renée Umstattd Meyer, PhD, MCHES, FAAHB, Professor, Associate Dean for Research, Baylor University
Umstattd Meyer MR, Moore JB, Abildso C, Edwards MB, Gamble A, Baskin ML. Rural Active Living: A Call to Action. J Public Health Manag Pract. 2016 Sep-Oct;22(5):E11-20. doi: 10.1097/PHH.0000000000000333. PMID: 26327514; PMCID: PMC4775461.
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