Informing the creation of an evidence-based app for daily physical activity in schools
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It has been well document that physical activity has positive effects on physical health and well-being, as well as academic performance. In contrast, sedentary behaviour has been associated with negative health implications, such as increased prevalence of diabetes and obesity. As children are leading a physical inactive lifestyle, an intervention is required. Daily physical activity (DPA) is a mandated 20 minute policy that was implemented in school systems with the goal of increasing activity levels of students in the classroom. However, implementing DPA is challenging for a number of reasons. Technology, specifically a mobile application, is a potential resource that could increase the feasibility DPA and physical activity levels in children. Therefore, the purpose of this thesis was to complete an environmental scan of the app market to identify strengths and weaknesses of existing apps relevant to DPA. Through an environmental scan and focus group interviews it was determined that apps that were gamified and included a greater number of behavior change techniques exhibited a higher perceived quality than those excluding gamification techniques. Further, it was identified that teachers face various constraints in the classroom and have inadequate resources to properly implement DPA in the classroom. These findings can inform the creation of a physical activity based app for the classroom.