Implementing and Disseminating Exercise Programs for Older Adult Populations

  • Marcia G. OryEmail author
  • Samuel D. TowneJr.
  • Alan B. Stevens
  • Chae Hee Park
  • Wojtek Jan Chodzko-Zajko

Key Points

  • Multiple existing evidence-based programs for promoting exercise and physical activity can be delivered through the aging services network.

  • Marketing evidence-based physical activity programs to potential delivery sites and practitioners is essential for beginning community programs.

  • Federal resources are available to help practitioners identify, implement, disseminate, and sustain evidence-based programs for promoting physical activity.

  • Older adult participants can use guided decision-making tools to safely participate in community-based physical activity programs.

  • In the USA, numerous national efforts are underway to develop community programs to enhance physical activity for older adults, yet major challenges remain in reaching the majority of older adults.


Evidence-based programs Exercise and physical activity Implementation and dissemination research Older adults Aging services network Exercise is Medicine 



This chapter supports the mission of the Strategic Health Initiative on Aging of the American College of Sports Medicine. Preparation of this chapter was also partially supported by funding from the Prevention Research Center’s Healthy Aging Research Network Special Interest Projects (CDC #U48 DP001924) and the National Institute on Aging for its support of the Community Resource Center for Senior Health (1RC4AG038183). The opinions are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position of the American College of Sports Medicine, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or National Institutes of Health.


  1. 1.
    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Physical Activity Programs [Internet]. 2014.
  2. 2.
    Rogers ME. The ACSM strategic health initiative on aging. J Aging Phys Act. 2012;20:s20–1.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Administration for Community Living. Administration on Aging Disease Prevention and Health Promotion Services. 2014.
  4. 4.
    National Council on Aging. Center for Healthy Aging. Active living every day [Internet]. 2014.
  5. 5.
    National Council on Aging. Center for Healthy Aging. Enhance Fitness. 2014.
  6. 6.
    Reynolds J, Thibodeaux L, Jiang L, Francis K, Hochhalter A. Adaptation of an evidence-based physical activity intervention, Fit & Strong! promotes physical activity and well being in older cancer survivors. Front Public Health. 2014;2:171. doi: 10.3389/fpubh.2014.00171.PubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Smith ML, Ory MG, Jiang L, Howell D, Chen S, Pulczinski J, Swierc S, and Stevens AB. Texercise Select effectiveness: an examination of physical activity and nutrition Outcomes. Trans Behav Med. 2015;in press.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Ory MG, Ahn S, Jiang L, Smith ML, Whitelaw N, Ritter P, Lorig K. Successes of a national study of the chronic disease self-management program: meeting the triple aim of health care reform. Med Care. 2013;51(11):992–8.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Healy TC, Peng C, Haynes P, McMahon E, Botler J, Gross L. The feasibility and effectiveness of translating A Matter of Balance into a volunteer lay leader model. J Appl Gerontol. 2008;27(1):34–51.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    National Council on Aging. Center for Healthy Aging. Tai Ji Quan: Moving for better balance [Internet]. 2014.
  11. 11.
    Towne Jr SD, Ory MG, Smith ML. Cost of fall-related hospitalizations among older adults: environmental comparisons from the 2011 Texas hospital inpatient discharge data. Popul Health Manag. 2014;17:351–6.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Chodzko-Zajko WJ, Proctor DN, Fiatarone Singh MA, Minson CT, Nigg CR, Salem GJ, et al. American College of Sports Medicine position stand. Exercise and physical activity for older adults. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2009;41(7):1510–30. doi: 10.1249/MSS.0b013e3181a0c95c.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar


  1. American College of Sports Medicine. EXERCISE IS MEDICINE®: A Global Health Initiative. 2014.
  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Prevention Research Centers Healthy Aging Research Network. 2011.
  3. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Report to Congress: The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ Evaluation of Community-based Wellness and Prevention Programs under Section 4202 (b) of the Affordable Care Act. Accessed 20 Oct 2014.
  4. Chodzko-Zajko W. ACSM’s exercise for older adults. Philadelphia: Lippincott, Williams, and Wilkins; 2013.Google Scholar
  5. Chodzko-Zajko W, Sheppard L, Senior J, Park CH, Mockenhaupt R, Bazzarre T. The USA national strategic plan for promoting physical activity in the mid-life and older adult population: A four year progress report on the National Blueprint, Quest., 2005;57:3. National Council on Aging. Where to find evidence-based programs. 2014.
  6. National Institute on Aging. Go4Life [Internet]. 2014.
  7. Park CH, Chodzko-Zajko W, Ory MG, Gleason-Senior J, Bazzarre TL, Mockenhaupt R. The impact of a national strategy to increase physical activity among older adults on national organizations. J Aging Phys Act. 2010;18:425–38.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Resnick B, Ory MG, Hora K, Rogers ME, Page P, Bolin JN, et al. A proposal for a new screening paradigm and a tool called Exercise and Assessment and Screening for You (EASY). J Aging Phys Act. 2008;16(2):215–33.PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marcia G. Ory
    • 1
    Email author
  • Samuel D. TowneJr.
    • 1
  • Alan B. Stevens
    • 2
  • Chae Hee Park
    • 3
  • Wojtek Jan Chodzko-Zajko
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Health Promotion and Community Health SciencesTexas A&M Health Science Center School of Public HealthCollege StationUSA
  2. 2.Center for Applied Health Research, Baylor Scott and White HealthTempleUSA
  3. 3.Department of Sport and Healthy AgingKorea National Sport UniversitySeoulSouth Korea
  4. 4.Department of KinesiologyUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignUrbanaUSA

Personalised recommendations