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Trial of Activity for Adolescent Girls (TAAG)

Clinical Trials URL:
Study Type: Clinical Trial
Prepared on October 29, 2009
Last Updated on August 20, 2008
Consent: Unrestricted Consent
Commercial Use Restrictions: No
NHLBI Division: DCVS
Collection Type: Open BioLINCC Study - See bottom of this webpage for request information


The purpose of the multicenter randomized trial was to test the effectiveness of a multicomponent school-based and community-linked intervention in preventing the decline in physical activity levels and cardiovascular fitness in middle school girls (i.e., in grades 6-8).


The Report of the Surgeon General on Physical Activity and Health (USDHHS, 1996) emphasized that regular physical activity has important health benefits including reducing the risk of heart disease, and helping to treat and prevent high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes, and to prevent osteoporosis and colon cancer. In addition, physical activity helps control weight, reduces feelings of depression and anxiety, and promotes psychological well being. Inactivity increases with age and is more common among women than men and among those with lower income, less education, and in minorities (USDHHS, 1996). Even though adolescents are more active than adults, many do not engage in recommended levels of physical activity, and participation declines with age throughout adolescence, especially in girls (USDHHS, 1996; CDC, 1997). Fourteen percent of teenage girls get no regular exercise, twice the percentage as for boys. The proportion of adolescent girls who participate in regular vigorous physical activity declines dramatically each year they are in high school, from 61 percent among 9th graders to 41percent among 12th grade girls. In high school, enrollment for girls in daily physical education classes dropped from 41 percent in 1991 to 25 percent in 1995. Both the CDC report (1997) and the Surgeon General's Report (USDHHS, 1996) recommended the need for research testing the effectiveness of a coordinated school-based physical activity intervention linked to community agency programs to increase physical activity by adolescent girls.


Middle school girls with English-speaking skills and no conditions to prevent participation in physical activity in 36 schools in six geographically diverse areas of the United States. Random, cross-sectional samples were drawn within schools: 6th graders in 2003 (n 1721) and 8th graders in 2005 (n 3504) and 2006 (n 3502).

Researchers receiving the TAAG data are encouraged to contact study investigators that have previously published TAAG data.


A school-based, community-linked intervention modestly improved physical activity in girls.


Webber LS, Catellier DJ, Lytle LA, Murray DM, Pratt CA, Young DR, Elder JP, Lohman TG, Stevens J, Jobe JB, Pate RR; TAAG Collaborative Research Group. Promoting physical activity in middle school girls: Trial of Activity for Adolescent Girls. Am J Prev Med. 2008 Mar;34(3):173-84.