CHAMPS I was a six-month public health model intervention that encouraged seniors living in two low-income congregate housing facilities to increase their physical activity by participating in existing community-based physical activity classes and programs of their choice. The program was offered to everyone regardless of their health problems. Enrollees were encouraged to adopt activities tailored to their preferences, physical abilities, health status, income, and transportation resources.

In addition, older persons using the community senior center were targeted to test the intervention in a small sample from the community at large. 

Program Components

  1. Informational Meeting
  2. One-on-one assistance in selecting a class or program tailored to their interests
  3. Activity logs
  4. Physical Activity Directory (detailed information on all physical activity classes and programs in the community suitable for seniors, updated quarterly)
  5. Six monthly group meetings providing information and support
  6. Newsletters
  7. Written materials providing tips, strategies, and information
  8. Encouragement from staff
  9. Telephone support
  10. Incentives such as chances to win small prizes for attending meetings

Research Design

  1. CHAMPS I was a 6-month comparison-group design in which one congregate housing facility received the intervention and the other served as a wait-list comparison group (receiving the intervention at the end of the comparison period).
  2. Individuals were first recruited to attend an informational meeting at which time they were invited to enroll. In the congregate housing facilities, proactive population-based strategies were used to attempt to recruit a representative sample of the target population to the meeting. To recruit a convenience sample of older individuals from the community, a more traditional media-based approach was used.
  3. Two approaches were used to measure physical activity: (a)daily reporting on activity logs and (b)point-prevalence self-reports of activity measured by a self-administered questionnaire at baseline and six months. 

Funding Agency

National Institute on Aging
Grant No. AG09931