The COVID-19 pandemic taught us many lessons, including underscoring the need to return to the basics of physical activity and the importance of holistic health. For more than a decade, the ACSM / Anthem American Fitness Index® has recognized the critical role physical activity and city infrastructure like parks and trails play in a city’s overall health and fitness.
The science-based Fitness Index annually evaluates and ranks America’s 100 largest cities using health behaviors, chronic diseases and community infrastructure indicators that support a physically active lifestyle. This year, the Fitness Index looked at 34 indicators, including two new ones – food insecurity and sleep, to highlight the importance of a holistic perspective in personal and community fitness. Data is available for all cities and can be viewed or compared with others ranked in the Fitness Index by accessing the online City Comparison Tool.
At the community level, the Fitness Index is used as an assessment and evaluation tool to educate community leaders on the importance of key indicators of physical activity. Leaders can then focus on policy, systems and environmental change strategies that create sustainability for their community.
ACSM and the Anthem Foundation launched the Fitness Index in 2008. Learn more at americanfitnessindex.org.
ACSM and the Anthem Foundation will release the 2021 Fitness Index rankings at 7 a.m. EDT on July 13.
The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) is the largest sports medicine and exercise science organization in the world. More than 50,000 members and certified fitness professionals are dedicated to advancing and integrating scientific research to improve educational and practical applications of exercise science and sports medicine. ACSM advocates for legislation to help the government and health community make physical activity a priority. Find details at www.acsm.org.
As the philanthropic arm of Anthem, Inc., the Anthem Foundation promotes the organization’s commitment to improving lives and communities. Through strategic partnerships and programs, the Foundation is addressing the disparities and social determinants that will help create a healthier generation of Americans. The Foundation also coordinates the company’s year-round Dollars for Dollars program which provides a 100 percent match of associates’ donations, as well as its Volunteer Time Off and Dollars for Doers community service programs. Learn more about the Anthem Foundation at http://www.anthem.foundation.
Journalists can contact ACSM Media Relations Manager Lisa Ramage ([email protected]) for an embargoed news release, data on specific cities and/or to speak with ACSM Fitness Index and Anthem Foundation spokespersons.
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