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Missoula City-County Health Department: Health Promotion
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Missoula City-County Health Department: Health Promotion

Missoula City-County Health Department: Health Promotion

Active Kids


The Missoula City-County Health Department is working to improve health by encouraging children and youth to increase their physical activity.

Inactivity and increasing overweight are both problems in Missoula County and nationwide.  Active Kids is a local response to the nationwide problem.  The increasing number of overweight and inactive children has been described as a crisis and an epidemic. Many factors have combined over time to create this problem, and many strategies need to be in place affect change.

BMI reports for Missoula 3rd Graders
    2008-2014 Report

The body mass index (BMI), is a statistical measurement of the relationship of a person's weight and height. Though it does not actually measure the percentage of body fat, it is used to estimate a healthy body weight based on a person's height. Due to its ease of measurement and calculation, it is the most widely used diagnostic tool to identify weight problems within a population, whether individuals are underweight, overweight, or obese.

Report on Physical Activity of Missoula County Youth - March 2008, a special report on 2nd through 12th grades.

Physical activity - Missoula

Overweight & obesity concerns - Missoula


logo Let's Move! Missoula

Let's Move! Missoula

Let's Move! Missoula is a public/private partnership of community leaders whose mission is to reduce and prevent childhood obesity in Missoula County while enhancing the health of all residents.

The goal is to help children escape the health and social consequences of obesity.

Missoula's initiative is modeled on the Let's Move campaign spearheaded by First Lady Michelle Obama.


Let's Move! Missoula is made up of representatives from these agencies:
  • Child Care Resources
  • City of Missoula
  • Community Medical Center
  • Office of the Mayor
  • Missoula Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Missoula City-County Health Dept
  • Missoula Board of County Commissioners
  • Missoula County Public Schools
  • Missoula County Superintendent of Schools
  • Missoula Family YMCA
  • Missoula Parks & Recreation
  • Providence St. Patrick Hospital
  • The University of Montana
  • United Way of Missoula County

Summit to Prevent Childhood Obesity - held in Missoula, Sept. 29, 2012


Active Kids Coalition

The Missoula Active Kids Coalition is made up of individuals, agencies, businesses and organizations committed to enhancing and increasing kids’ physical activity.

Founding members: Missoula Parks & Recreation, YMCA, University of Montana, Forum for Children & Youth, Missoula City-County Health Department

Missoula Active Kids meets quarterly.  The general public is invited. 

Not yet scheduled.


April 2015
Jan 2015
Dec 2014
June 2014


Newsletter archive


Benefits of increasing physical activity

Aside from meeting national recommendations for children to be physically active twice as much as adults (60 minutes a day at a minimum), there are other important benefits linked to physical activity. These include:


 Unplug & Play 

Unplug & Play (Web site) - Unstructured, imaginative play is crucial to a child's brain development.   Find ways to reduce screen time (TV, computer, games) and increase physical activity.

The news about children and screen time continues to be discouraging. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, over the past five years, there has been a huge increase in media use among young people:

    What schools can do

NASPE five recommended focuses (National Association for Sport and Physical Education):

CATCH Program - a healthy eating educational program for elementary school children.

Take Ten! - a national program that describes creative ways to integrate physical activity in to any classroom curriculum.  

Safe Routes to School

National Guidelines for Physical Activity - for physical education, PE teachers and coaches - National Association for Sports and Physical Education


Activities for non-school hours

Missoula Flagship Program - a school and community partnership that provides free skill-building activities to Missoula youth during non-school hours.  It is many Missoula area schools.


Missoula Parks & Recreation

Missoula Forum for Youth & Children -  an alliance of prevention coalitions, agencies, and individuals with the goal of helping the community grow healthy and resilient children and youth.

Walking and Bicycling

Joint use of public lands and facilities


    Activities at home

Physical Activity & Your Daily Dose  - How much physical activity do we need?  What are the benefits?  What are some easy ways to get it?

Other things you can do At Home.

Picture of a Dad playing with kids in a park.

Community resources


Child and Nature Network

Child and Nature Network - why children need nature and how to access nature in your own neighborhood.  Free monthly family activities.


    Other resources


Strategic Alliance - an alliance addressing healthy practices and policies in government and corporate environments.

Eat Smart, Move More - North Carolina - tips, strategies, resources and interactive tools to help people get on the right track to maintaining a healthy weight, including a body mass index calculator, an "Ask the Expert" section, and a discussion board.

We Can! - Ways to Enhance Children's Activity and Nutrition, a national movement designed to give parents, caregivers, and entire communities a way to help children 8 to 13 years old stay at a healthy weight.  National Institute for Health

Urban design can increase physical activity: A study was done in Bozeman, MT to record use changes after modifying a rural road to include bike lanes and sidewalks.  Video taping recorded pedestrian and bicycle use before and after the modification of Babcock Road in 2005. After modification, combined pedestrian and bicyclist use increased 256%; bicycle use increased 247%;and pedestrian use increased 273%.

Benefits of Healthy Lifestyle Choices - for all ages

Using The World Around You - for all ages, to be healthier and more active.


Missoula Measures - selected data, links and other information on scores of topics related to health and quality of life in Missoula, Montana.

Contact information

Let's Move! Missoula Coordinator: Lisa Beczkiewicz
Phone: 406-258-3889
Fax: 406-258-3992
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