About InPACT at Home
School closures during the COVID-19 pandemic limited opportunities to engage in physical education, recess, active travel to school programs (e.g., Safe Routes to School), afterschool physical activity programs, and extracurricular athletic activities. School closures also eliminated access to inclusive physical activity, which has the potential to negatively impact the social, physical, emotional, and cognitive development of children with disabilities. With a reduction in public physical activity opportunities, finding time to exercise in one’s own home became the pandemic trend.
Using research findings that we generated over the past few years in Michigan elementary classrooms, we developed Interrupting Prolonged sitting with ACTivity at Home (InPACT at Home).
InPACT at Home is an evidence-informed, home-based physical activity program that enables K-12 students to engage in health-enhancing physical activity.
Physical education teachers, fitness professionals, pediatric exercise physiologists, athletes, and high school students from across the state came together to develop exercise videos that are developmentally appropriate and could be completed at home with either no or minimal equipment.
Adaptations were also included for children with physical limitations. All videos are accessible on smartphones, tablets, and computers.
Physical Activity Playing Cards
To supplement the exercise videos, physical activity playing cards were developed to provide another opportunity for children and families to move and play together. The physical activity playing cards include cardio, strength, mindfulness, flexibility, and “with a buddy” activities. New activity playing cards are uploaded to the program website each month (inpactathome.umich.edu).
Since one-third of Michigan’s K-12 public school students lack internet access in the home, we partnered with Detroit Public Television to broadcast our exercise videos on their recently launched Michigan Learning Channel.
Family Engagement Toolkit
In addition to the InPACT at Home exercise videos and playcards, a family engagement toolkit is available to help children and their parents deal with the multiple stressors related to the pandemic.
Across the state and country, individuals and communities are experiencing heightened stress during the pandemic related to fear of infection, job loss, educational disruption, and social isolation. Such COVID-related stressors can have negative effects on one’s immune response, thereby lowering one’s ability to fight off diseases like COVID-19. Hence, developing a family engagement toolkit that included social-emotional activities for families is an important component of this program.