Purpose: To evaluate the impact of a unique school-based program of exercise, health education, and behavior modification on health knowledge, health behaviors, coronary risk factors, and cardiovascular fitness in minority adolescents. Methods: A total of 346 students from an inner-city public high school participated in health promotion intervention or regular physical education volleyball classes. Subjects were African-American (47%), Asian-American (9%), Hispanic (21%), white (3%), and other (19%). The health promotion curriculum consisted of 11 weeks of daily circuit training exercise and health lecture-discussions. Results: The groups were similar in age, height, weight, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status. Following intervention, both boys (P < .001) and girls (P < .006) significantly improved health knowledge test scores. Significant benefits for girls included improved dietary habits (P < .05), reduced cholesterol (P < .004), and higher estimated V̇O2max (P < .0001). There were no other significant changes in boys. Conclusions: The results suggest that a school-based health promotion program of exercise and health lecture-discussion is beneficial for multiethnic, inner-city adolescents, especially females.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Psychiatry and Mental health