A kindergarten-based child health promotion program: the Adapted National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Mission X for improving physical fitness in South Korea

Jungwon Min, Gilsook Kim, Hyunjung Lim, Nubia A. Carvajal, Charles W. Lloyd, Youfa Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: Effective and sustainable intervention programs are needed to promote physical activity (PA) in children. Objectives: To adapt the NASA Mission X: Train Like an Astronaut program for use with South Korean children, and to evaluate its feasibility and effectiveness for promoting children’s physical fitness. Methods: Children 5 years old (n = 212) and their parents were recruited from three kindergartens in three cities to participate in a 6-week intervention program in fall 2014. We assessed the children’s PA and related changes, and parental changes in attitude and beliefs, after participation in the intervention. Results: Girls reported less PA than boys (40.7 vs. 59.0, p < 0.01). Children with a normal body mass index (BMI) were more likely to be active than underweight children (< 10 percentile) or overweight children (⩾ 85 percentile). After the intervention, about one-half of the children had increased their level of PA (49.4%), increased interest in PA (59.1%) and found psychological need satisfaction in exercise (52.6%). The majority of parents became aware of the necessity of childhood PA (94.2%), their child’s PA capability (64.3%), and the relationship of PA with their children’s self-esteem (79.9%). Conclusions: The adapted NASA Mission X program was feasible and effective in promoting PA in kindergarteners, and also improved their parents’ attitude and beliefs about children’s PA in South Korea. This study provided a model for promoting childhood health through child care and educational settings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)52-61
Number of pages10
JournalGlobal health promotion
Volume26
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2019

Keywords

  • Korea
  • NASA Mission X
  • body weight
  • child
  • intervention
  • kindergarteners
  • parents
  • physical activity
  • physical fitness
  • self-esteem

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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