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Dr. Kristin Baker, PhD, PI of ENACT’s BOOST study, and doctoral fellow Aileen Ledingham, PT, MS, recently spent time exercising with members of The Historic Peoples Baptist Church of Boston. The congregation at Peoples Baptist Church has achieved great success with its Health Ministry since it began several years ago. After starting a walking group with the support of ENACT and the New England Chapter of the Arthritis Foundation in 2010, the group has continued to ‘walk’ in strides! While the program has had excellent sustainability, the Boston winters always sidetrack the activity of the group. Those snow drifts can be pesky for people with arthritis!
To address this challenge, Dr. Baker extended our community programming initiatives by bringing the evidence-based BOOST exercise program to the members of the church to help them acquire a self-sustaining option to stay active during bad weather. Dr. Baker led one session per week for 4 weeks and then used some mHealth technology to support the interim sessions to encourage participants to develop confidence in both doing and leading the exercises. The group continues to use their BOOST training along with regular walking activity and anticipates that it will take them through the winter!
Peoples Baptist Church was recently a featured “FitChurch” in a Boston Black Ministerial Alliance video, where their accomplishments were touted as a model for other churches, with a goal of being replicated nationally in the religious community. Congratulations to Peoples on this well-earned recognition!