Implementing Physical Activity Recommendations in a Tri-Ethnic Rural Community through a Community-University Partnership.

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BACKGROUND: A tri-ethnic rural community with limited resources and a university Prevention Research Center (PRC) developed a partnership to promote evidence-based physical activity.

OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to investigate how a community-university partnership can disseminate and implement ἀe Commu nity Guide's recommendations for increasing physical activity and create a model for other under-resourced communities experiencing high rates of chronic disease.

METHODS: Qualitative data collected through 47 semistructured interviews, meeting minutes, and local newspaper articles were coded for themes and analyzed for patterns across the data.

RESULTS: Implementation resulted in the creation of new paths and trails, increased walkability throughout the community, local park enhancements, and a community-wide campaign. Lessons learned included the importance of community-defined goals and outcomes, leadership, volunteerism, mutually beneficial goals, synergy, and having nontraditional partners.

CONCLUSION: This research provides a community-university partnership model for implementing evidence-based strategies to increase physical activity in rural communities.