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The Children in Action Feasibility Study (CIA)

This study has been completed.
National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Theresa A Nicklas, Baylor College of Medicine Identifier:
First received: September 17, 2012
Last updated: September 28, 2012
Last verified: September 2012
The Children in Action (CIA) program was a five month physical activity intervention. This intervention was a feasibility study with 3- to 5-year-olds enrolled in four Head Start centers. After baseline assessment, centers were matched by ethnicity and for number of participants and randomly assigned to either the intervention or the control condition. A total of 224 preschool children were randomly selected across the four centers. To evaluate the efficacy of the CIA intervention, the change in physical activity, gross motor skills and weight during the awake time and used mixed effect time-series regression models was compared. Observations did not show a statistical difference between intervention and control groups in physical activity level during the awake time, gross motor development or weight status. It was demonstrated that it is feasible to conduct the SPARK-EC curriculum among preschool children attending Head Start Centers but that an increased dose and/or longer intervention duration will be required to impact gross motor skills, weight status and physical activity levels during this critical early childhood development stage.

Condition Intervention
Motor Activity
Behavioral: SPARK-EC

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment
Masking: Single Blind (Outcomes Assessor)
Primary Purpose: Prevention
Official Title: The Children in Action Feasibility Study

Further study details as provided by Baylor College of Medicine:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Change from baseline in physical activity at post-intervention. [ Time Frame: 8 months ]
    Mini-Mitter Actical, an accelerometer-based activity monitor, was used to assess physical activity of the preschool children. Unit of measurement was mean percentage of time spent in sedentary, light and moderate-vigorous physical activity each day.

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • Change from baseline in gross motor skills at post intervention. [ Time Frame: 8 months ]
    Gross motor skills were measured using the Test of Gross Motor Development. Unit of measurement was the Total Gross Motor Development percentile rank.

  • Body Mass Index [ Time Frame: 8 months ]
    Body Mass Index was calculated using height and weight measures collected on the preschool children. Unit of measurement was kilograms (wt.)/meters squared (ht.).

Enrollment: 274
Study Start Date: September 2007
Study Completion Date: August 2009
Primary Completion Date: August 2009 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Experimental: SPARK-EC
SPARK-EC curriculum for preschoolers offered instruction and practice in a comprehensive program designed to promote motor development through increased physical activity.
Behavioral: SPARK-EC
The CIA study was a 5 month physical activity change intervention that utilized the SPARK-EC curriculum as the intervention. The SPARK-EC curriculum was designed to be a quality, comprehensive physical activity program for the preschool setting. Pre-and Post-intervention assessments were conducted


Ages Eligible for Study:   3 Years to 5 Years   (Child)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   Yes

Inclusion Criteria:

  • 3-5 years old
  • attends Head Start
  • African-American
  • Hispanic-American

Exclusion Criteria:

  • older than 5 years old
  • does not attend Head Start
  • race/ethnicity other than African-American or Hispanic-American
  • has a disability or handicap that would prevent them from participating in physical activities
  Contacts and Locations
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Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT01697124

Sponsors and Collaborators
Baylor College of Medicine
National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)
Principal Investigator: Theresa A Nicklas, DrPH Baylor College of Medicine
  More Information

Responsible Party: Theresa A Nicklas, Professor of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine Identifier: NCT01697124     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: H-20952
R21HD054836-02 ( US NIH Grant/Contract Award Number )
Study First Received: September 17, 2012
Last Updated: September 28, 2012

Keywords provided by Baylor College of Medicine:
Physical activity
Head Start
SPARK-EC processed this record on April 28, 2017