Process evaluation of an intervention to increase child activity levels in afterschool programs

S. Morgan Hughey*, R. Glenn Weaver, Ruth Saunders, Collin Webster, Michael W. Beets

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Identifying effective strategies in Afterschool programs (ASPs) to increase children's moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) in the ASP setting is crucial. This study describes the process evaluation outcomes from an intervention to reduce child sedentary time and increase MVPA in ASPs. Methods: Four ASPs participated in a quasi-experimental single-group pre-post study targeting child sedentary time and MVPA. The strategies implemented to help ASPs meet Physical Activity Standards consisted of detailed schedules, professional development trainings, on-site booster sessions, and technical assistance. Process evaluation related to staff behaviors was collected via systematic observation to identify the interventions impact on the physical and social environment of the ASP. Random-effects regression models examined the impact of the intervention on boys/girls observed sedentary behavior, MVPA, and changes in staff behaviors. Results: Increases in MVPA and reductions in sedentary behavior were observed during enrichment, academics, organized and free-play physical activities (PA). Corresponding changes in staff behaviors were observed during these ASP contexts. For example, staff reduced child idle-time during organized PA (38.9-1.8%) and provided energizers more often during enrichment (0.2-11.5%). Conclusions: This study identified changes in staff behavior during ASP contexts that led to increases in child MVPA and decreases in child sedentary behavior.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)164-170
Number of pages7
JournalEvaluation and Program Planning
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2014


  • Community
  • Out-of-school-time
  • Physical activity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Social Psychology
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Strategy and Management
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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