The prevalence of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) is increasing worldwide, also among children. Information about primary prevention of NCD’s is increasing; however, convincing strategies among children is needed. The present paper describes the design and methods in the Health Oriented Pedagogical Project (HOPP) study. The main objective is to evaluate the effects of a school-based physical activity intervention program on cardio-metabolic risk factors. Secondary objectives include assessment of physical, psychological and academic performance variables.
The HOPP study is a 7 years longitudinal large-scale controlled intervention in seven elementary schools ( n = 1545) with two control schools ( n = 752); all aged 6–11 years at baseline. The school-based physical activity intervention program includes an increase in physical activity (PA) of 225 min/week as an integrated part of theoretical learning, in addition to the curriculum based 90 min/week of ordinary PA. Primary outcomes include cardio-metabolic risk factors measured as PA level, BMI status, waist circumference, muscle mass, percent fat, endurance test performance, total serum cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein (HDL), non-HDL, micro C-reactive protein (mCRP) and long-term blood sugar (HbA1c). In addition, secondary outcomes include anthropometric growth measures, physical fitness, quality of life (QoL), mental health, executive functions, diet and academic performance.
HOPP will provide evidence of effects on cardio-metabolic risk factors after a long-term PA intervention program in elementary schoolchildren. School-based PA intervention programs may be an effective arena for health promotion and disease prevention.
The study is registered in Clinical trials (ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT02495714) as of June 20 th – 2015, retrospectively registered. The collection of baseline values was initiated in mid-January 2015.