Promoting Physical Activity in Churchgoing Latinas

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San Diego State University




Chronic Disease


Behavioral: Cancer screening
Behavioral: Physical activity

Study type


Funder types



R01CA138894-05S1 (U.S. NIH Grant/Contract)
R01CA138894-05S2 (U.S. NIH Grant/Contract)

Details and patient eligibility


The low prevalence of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) among adult Latinas likely contributes to the high rates of cancer and other chronic diseases in this population. The goals of the current study, based largely upon the core principles of the Social Ecological Model, are to design, implement, and evaluate an innovative multi-level intervention promoting physical activity among churchgoing Latinas. The evidenced-based intervention targets three "tiers" of environmental influences (i.e., church, immediate neighborhood surrounding the church, and community) on activity, as well as MVPA-related personal factors (i.e.., interpersonal, cultural, and perceived environmental variables). The physical activity intervention will be compared with an attention-control condition providing health education on cancer screening and prevention. Sixteen churches will be randomly assigned to either the physical activity intervention or the attention-control condition. The primary aim of the study is to determine whether a multi-level intervention will increase MVPA among Latina churchgoers in the intervention condition relative to the attention-control condition.

Full description

This two-group randomized controlled trial combines innovative and traditional methods for promoting moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and cancer screening (breast, cervical, colorectal, and skin) among Latinas, and is tested simultaneously in a two-group design. Both interventions lasted two years. The study's primary outcome was min/week of accelerometer-assessed MVPA at baseline (M1) and 12 months (M2) and 24 months (M3) following the start of the intervention.We selected cancer screening as a comparison condition given the relevance of this topic to our target community (i.e., low cervical and colorectal cancer screening rates and follow-up). It was hypothesized that over time, participants in the physical activity condition would engage in significantly higher levels of MVPA, compared to participants in the cancer screening condition. We also expected greater changes in individual-, interpersonal-, and environmental-level correlates of physical activity among participants in the physical activity condition compared to those in the cancer screening condition. Conversely, we expected that participants in the cancer screening condition would engage in higher screening rates compared to those in the physical activity intervention.We anticipated greater changes in individual, interpersonal, and environmental correlates of cancer screening in this condition compared to the physical activity condition.


436 patients




18 to 65 years old


Accepts Healthy Volunteers

Inclusion criteria

  • Between the ages of 18-65 years of age
  • Latino
  • Must be a member of a participating church for at least six months
  • Live within 10-15 minutes driving distance from the church
  • Able to travel to the church during the week
  • Able to attend activities at the church during the week
  • Attend church activities (worship or otherwise) at least 4 times a month
  • Plan on living in same residence for the next 24 months
  • Engage in less than 150 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity per week

Exclusion criteria

  • Attendance at other churches participating in the study
  • Must not have any conditions limiting ability to be physically active
  • Pregnant

Trial design

Primary purpose




Interventional model

Parallel Assignment


Double Blind

436 participants in 2 patient groups

Physical activity
Experimental group
Latinas exposed to multi-level Faith in Action intervention promoting physical activity.
Behavioral: Physical activity
Cancer screening
Active Comparator group
Latinas exposed to Faith in Action intervention on cancer screening and prevention.
Behavioral: Cancer screening

Trial contacts and locations



Data sourced from

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