Document Type



Doctor of Nursing Practice



Date of Defense


Graduate Advisor

Susann Farberman,DNP


Bachman, Jean


Hanko, Shelly

Kiel, Deborah


Despite advances in medical science, the prevalence of obesity in the US has more than doubled in the last three decades, to over 72 million people (CDC, 2009). The purpose of this project was to pilot an exercise program that would increase physical activity in a group of adolescents and one of their parents or guardians. A convenient sample of 10 adults and eight adolescents returned surveys and exercised through the entire eight weeks (N = 18). Ten of the 18 participants (56%), six parents and four adolescents, reported increased frequency of exercise each week throughout the eight week period. Of the participants who exercised for the eight week period, only four of 18 (22%) used a pedometer (three adults and one adolescent). Over the eight weeks, one adolescent weight did not change, five lost weight and, two gained weight; four adults weight did not change, six lost weight, and no one gained weight. When initial BMIs were calculated, two of the adolescents were obese, four were overweight, one was underweight, and one was normal; six adults were obese, none were overweight, and four were normal. Over the eight week exercise program, one adolescent BMI remained unchanged, six had a reduction, and one increased; four adults BMI remained unchanged, six were lowered, and none increased. Using the Wilcoxon Signed Rank Test, the BMI and weight loss of adult participants pre and post exercise was significant (Z = 0.027, P <0.05) but not significant for adolescents. Findings demonstrate that nurse practitioners in a family health care practice can encourage adolescents and their families to increase physical activity that can result in weight loss, a decrease in BMI, and may help to reduce overweight and obesity in families.

OCLC Number


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Nursing Commons