Health and Wellness

Confronting Substance Use Disorder

Taking a closer look at the comprehensive response to substance use disorder, which is a public health crisis for park and recreation professionals.

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Mobile Recreation for Fun, Health and Wellness

Mobile recreation may be an appropriate strategy to meet the urgent need for additional recreational opportunities in underserved areas.

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Older Adult Health and Well-Being: Still a National Priority in a 'New Normal'

It is more crucial than ever before that we help older adults maintain a healthy lifestyle.

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Seattle P&R Tests Glyphosate Alternatives

To address the potential health threat posed by glyphosate, many agencies, like Seattle P&R, are reducing or eliminating their use of glyphosate products to ensure everyone has access to safe and healthy spaces.

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Designing Quality Play Spaces

Find out how active play can lead to positive health outcomes for children.

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Want Better Health? Get Back to Nature

Spending time in the great outdoors may have a positive impact on your overall health, including your heart and brain.

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Farmers Markets, Parks and Rec, and Healthy Meals

Pairing fresh, local produce with healthy meals is the perfect connection to strengthen the bonds between the community and the local agriculture system.

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Keeping It Real: A Different Approach to Discussing the Social Determinants of Health

Get to the heart of what “social determinants of health” really means, and what role parks and recreation can play.

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Parks and Recreation as Community Health and Wellness Hubs

Local park and recreation agencies are uniquely positioned to serve as health and wellness hubs in communities across the country.

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Parks for Inclusion Celebrates Two-Year Anniversary

This NRPA program has already reached 1.7 million people in the two years since its launch, surpassing the original goal of 1 million!

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Senior Centers: Reimagining Aging and Exploring New Opportunities

Today’s senior centers are being reinvented to meet the changing and diverse needs of a rapidly growing aging population.

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Connecting Communities Through Outdoor Play Enhances Eight Local Parks

Read about the grant, made possible by the Target Corporation, which provides funds to transform local parks to improve access to physical activity, social connection and create more resilient communities for low-income youth and families.

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Fostering Health and Wellness Through Shared Use Facilities

A lack of vacant land is forcing L.A. County agencies to seek innovative solutions and creative partnerships to meet the needs of their communities, especially underserved communities.

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Parks and Recreation: The Secret to a Long, Healthy Life?

Parks and recreation can be more intentional in its efforts to improve quality of life.

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Parks as a Solution to Climate Change

Climate change is impacting communities at the local level. Parks are the solution.

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Active People, Healthy Nation in Parks: Creating a More Active America, Together

A CDC initiative strives to help 27 million Americans become more physically active by 2027.

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Protect the Health and Wellness of Your Park and Recreation Staff

NRPA staff members interview park and recreation agencies on the benefits of prioritizing employee health and wellness.

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Fostering Healthier Communities by Creating Soccer Play Spaces

Transforming small, underutilized areas into mini-soccer pitches, the U.S. Soccer Foundation is serving communities that lack large open spaces and funding to build full-sized fields.

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What Happens When Parks and Artists Partner to Advance Equity

Local groups in two communities were given financial and technical support to work with artists to change their approach to building and managing parks for their communities.

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Parks and Health Equity: An Avenue to Support Health and Wellness for All

There is an opportunity to be more thoughtful about the role parks can play in promoting health equity for all.

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Addressing Health Disparities in Rural America

Local park and recreation agencies are a critical component of promoting equitable health outcomes in any community, but they may fill an even larger role in rural areas.

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Farmers Markets

The opportunity to provide access to healthy, fresh and local fruits and vegetables in your community park.

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Engaging Children in the Park Planning Process

Given that children are key park users we must be creative in how we engage them in the planning process.

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10-Minute Walk Campaign: Celebrating Mayors and Cities Leading the Way

Read updates from the first 12 cities to participate in technical assistance for the 10-Minute Walk campaign and see why nearly 200 mayors have signed on to improving park access and quality in their cities.

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Pathways to Play

As the creators of park experiences, how can we better engage with children and families and encourage greater use when designing paths and trails? For the second year, NRPA and Disney issued that challenge to park and recreation agencies across the country.

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Promoting Physical Activity with Temporary Street Closures

The concept of “Play Streets” has emerged as a way to promote outdoor play and physical activity for children in neighborhoods without access to safe, well-maintained parks and playgrounds.

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Developing a Park Prescription Program for Your Community

Park Prescription or “Park Rx” programs are gaining in popularity and helping to motivate people to be active in our parks. These programs encourage physicians to “prescribe” physical activity in park settings to their patients.

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Creating Wellness Policies for Your Park and Recreation Department

For a mission statement to be embraced, any effective wellness program must have as its foundation a system of policies that bolster the creation of a healthy, safe and supportive learning environment.

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Healthy Detroit: Building a Culture of Primary Prevention

After reading through the Affordable Care Act, Nicholas Mukhtar created Healthy Detroit, dedicated to improving health equity in Detroit.

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Healthy Eating for Healthy Aging!

To combat food insecurity among older Americans, local park and recreation agencies across the country have been offering a range of older adult nutrition programs.

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The Culture of Health

Creative placemaking in parks for healthy communities.

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Improving Military Readiness Through Physical Activity

Physical activity provides many health and fitness benefits, such as improved body composition, aerobic and muscular fitness, balance and flexibility, which can contribute to military readiness.

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Health Equity: Leading Through Programs, Environmental Changes and Policies

NRPA is proud to announce that the winner of the 2017 RWJF Award for Health Equity is Patti Solano, superintendent of community services at the City of Riverside Parks, Recreation, and Community Services Department (PRCSD).

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Creating Safe Routes to Parks

Measuring walking access to parks is a good starting point to link parks with public health goals.

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Community and Home Gardening Develop Lifelong Healthy Habits

Gardens can be used to foster a love and appreciation of nature. They can bridge connections to other cultures and provide opportunities for social engagement.

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Mobile Recreation Programs

In neighborhoods where activities for youth are lacking, mobile programs step in to fill a significant void.

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Empowering Older Adults to Age Out Loud!

Join us in celebrating Older Americans Month, and make the commitment to empower older adults through evidence-based programming for improved health and quality of life.

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The Health Benefits of Small Parks and Green Spaces

Small parks and green spaces are equally as important as large parks as public health solutions in urban communities.

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Celebrating Three Years of Healthy Out-of-School Time

Commit to Health is creating a healthier generation of youth through the implementation of the Healthy Eating Physical Activity standards.

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Go Healthy STL

Improving nutrition and fitness for low-income preschoolers in St. Louis.

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Working Together for a Healthier Wichita

Through partnerships and collaborations, the Health & Wellness Coalition of Wichita is working to ensure the entire community lives a healthy lifestyle.

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Setting the Table for a Successful Summer at South Burlington Recreation and Parks

South Burlington (Vermont) Recreation and Parks Department sees success in helping kids develop health eating habits using NRPA's Commit to Health program.

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Troops for Fitness Engages Military Veterans in Community Health and Wellness Programming

Some tips from park and recreation agencies that have successfully implemented Troops for Fitness programs.

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Super Summer Chefs

Grand Prairie, Texas, Parks, Arts and Recreation Department's Super Chef summer campers learned about the ingredients for a healthier lifestyle.

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Reducing Health Disparities in South Florida

Steven Marcus, Ed.D., is the recipient of the 2016 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Award for making measurable and sustainable differences in the health of South Florida residents.

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Serving Participants with Medical Needs

Medical advances combined with a broadened definition of disability under the 2008 ADAAA has opened up the possibility of a more active lifestyle for individuals with a wider variety of medical conditions.

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Returning Youth Sports to the Kids

What park and recreation professionals can do to help stem the sharp decline in the number of youths participating in sports.

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Commit to Health and Conservation: Seven Simple Activities

Seven easy programs to get youth and families outdoors this spring.

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Fracking on Parkland in Appalachia

How is fracking on or near public parklands impacting park usage?

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