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Camp NERF: Methods of a Summer Nutrition Ed Rec & Fitness Program to Prevent Unhealthy Weight Gain in Children

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details. Identifier: NCT02908230
Recruitment Status : Completed
First Posted : September 20, 2016
Last Update Posted : September 21, 2016
Aetna Foundation
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Carolyn Gunther, Ohio State University

Brief Summary:

The primary aims of this research project are to:

  1. Evaluate the efficacy of Camp NERF to improve child nutrition, physical activity, mental health, and anthropometric outcomes.
  2. Evaluate the efficacy of Camp NERF to improve caregiver self-efficacy for establishing healthy family nutrition and physical activity practices, amount of physical activity, and BMI.
  3. Evaluate the efficacy of Camp NERF to improve youth mentor nutrition, physical activity, and anthropometric outcomes.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Childhood Obesity Behavioral: Enhanced Care Behavioral: Standard Care Behavioral: Active Control Not Applicable

Detailed Description:

Background: The number of obese children in the US remains high, which is problematic due to the mental, physical, and academic effects of obesity on child health. Data indicate that school-age children, particularly underserved children, experience unhealthy gains in BMI at a rate nearly twice as fast during the summer months. Few efforts have been directed at implementing evidence-based programming to prevent excess weight gain during the summer recess.

Methods: Camp NERF is an 8-week, multi-component (nutrition, physical activity, and mental health), theory-based program for underserved school-age children in grades Kindergarten - 5th grade coupled with the USDA Summer Food Service Program. Twelve eligible elementary school sites will be randomized to one of the three programming groups: 1) Active Control (non-nutrition, physical activity, or mental health [4H curricula]); 2) Standard Care (nutrition and physical activity); or 3) Enhanced Care (nutrition, physical activity, and mental health) programming. Anthropometric, behavioral, and psychosocial data will be collected from child-caregiver dyads pre- and post-intervention. Site-specific characteristics and process evaluation measures will also be collected.

Discussion: This is the first, evidence-based intervention to address the issue of weight gain during the summer months among underserved, school-aged children. Results from this study will provide researchers, practitioners, and public health professionals with insight on evidence-based programming to aid in childhood obesity prevention during this particular window of risk.

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Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Actual Enrollment : 87 participants
Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: None (Open Label)
Primary Purpose: Prevention
Official Title: Camp NERF: Methods of a Theory-Based Nutrition Education Recreation and Fitness Program Aimed at Preventing Unhealthy Weight Gain in Underserved Elementary Children During Summer Months
Study Start Date : May 2015
Actual Primary Completion Date : August 2015
Actual Study Completion Date : August 2015

Arm Intervention/treatment
Placebo Comparator: Active Control
Active Control: exposure to a non-nutrition, physical activity, or mental health curriculum/program
Behavioral: Active Control
8-week (non-nutrition, physical activity or mental health) summer curriculum/program

Active Comparator: Standard Care
Standard Care: exposure to a nutrition and physical activity curriculum/program
Behavioral: Standard Care
8-week (nutrition and physical activity) summer curriculum/program

Experimental: Enhanced Care
Enhanced Care: exposure to a nutrition, physical activity, and mental health curriculum/program
Behavioral: Enhanced Care
8-week (nutrition, physical activity, and mental health) summer curriculum/program

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Change in child BMI z-score [ Time Frame: Baseline and 8 weeks ]

Information from the National Library of Medicine

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Ages Eligible for Study:   4 Years to 12 Years   (Child)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   Yes

Inclusion Criteria (site level):

  • Elementary school; USDA Summer Food Service Program open site; and 3) lacking structured programming

Exclusion Criteria:


Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its identifier (NCT number): NCT02908230

Sponsors and Collaborators
Ohio State University
Aetna Foundation
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Principal Investigator: Carolyn W Gunther, PhD Ohio State University
Publications automatically indexed to this study by Identifier (NCT Number):
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Responsible Party: Carolyn Gunther, Assistant Professor, Ohio State University Identifier: NCT02908230    
Other Study ID Numbers: 2014B0197
First Posted: September 20, 2016    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: September 21, 2016
Last Verified: September 2016
Individual Participant Data (IPD) Sharing Statement:
Plan to Share IPD: No
Additional relevant MeSH terms:
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Pediatric Obesity
Weight Gain
Body Weight Changes
Body Weight
Nutrition Disorders