Live Healthy Fairfax

CONTACT INFORMATION: Available during regular business hours 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Monday - Friday
703-246-8856 TTY 711
10777 Main Street
Fairfax, VA 22030
Susan Sanow
Partnership for a Healthier Fairfax Project Manager

Active Living

Increasing opportunities for physical activity to improve health.

Physical activity is essential to promote health and well-being in the community. People who are physically active tend to live longer and have lower risk for chronic disease, including heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, depression, and some cancers. Physical activity can also help with weight control and mental health. However, not all adults engage in physical activity. According to a 2012 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report, 21.9 percent of Virginia’s adults reported that during the past month, they had not participated in any physical activity. For youth, the most recent Fairfax County Youth Survey showed that rates of physical activity decreased as student grade level increased.

Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP)

Active Living Goals:

  1. Increase the number of children and adolescents who engage in daily physical activity.
  2. Increase the number of adults who engage in daily physical activity.
  3. Promote sustainability of programs and facilities that promote physical activity.

The Partnership is working to improve opportunities for children and adults to participate in more physical activities and lead more active lives. To combat cardiovascular disease and reduce obesity for youth and adults, opportunities for physical activity must be made available throughout the Fairfax community. Activities include implementing more Safe Routes to School programs, increasing the amount of biking and walking paths for children and adults, increasing the amount of low socioeconomic children and adolescents participating in recreational sports, and implementing policies to support the sustainability of physical activity programs and facilities. To find out more about Fairfax’s Active Living objectives and key actions, read the Live Healthy Fairfax Community Health Improvement Plan (pages 18-19).

See our progress detailed in the latest CHIP annual evaluation report.

What's Happening in the Community?

  • Bike Plan: The Board of Supervisors adopted the Fairfax County Master Bicycle Plan in October 2014, which recommends 1,130 miles in new on- and off-road bike routes.
  • Eat and Run: The Office for Children developed a resource guide, Eat and Run, to make it easier for child care providers to incorporate more physical activity and nutritious foods into their child care programs. For permission to use all or a portion of this work, please contact the Fairfax County Department of Family Services, Office for Children, 12011 Government Center Parkway, Suite 920, Fairfax, VA 22035 or call 703-324-8100, TTY 711.
  • Safe Routes to School:
    • In the spring of 2014, the Safe Routes to School Pilot Project Team focused its efforts on organizing the Safe Routes to School workshop held on May 5, 2014. This workshop was part of the three-day Healthy Community Design Summit in which Community Transformation Grant Technical Assistance Provider, Mark Fenton, was invited to serve as keynote speaker. Mr. Fenton spoke about the importance of policies for improving the physical environment of a community and its impact on physical activity.

    • To support children's safety for the implementation of the Safe Routes to School Program, the Community Transformation Grant funds were used to purchase 2,000 reflective stickers for children’s backpacks that have been distributed to all three schools. Forty reflective safety vests were also purchased to be distributed to parents who walk children to school at the three selected schools. Both the stickers and vests include the logo of the Virginia Department of Transportation’s Safe Routes to School program. Finally, funds from this grant were used to purchase signs for some neighborhoods. The signs read: "Children Walking to School! Please drive with care!" Find out more about the Safe Routes to School National Partnership.

    • To find out how to bring the Safe Routes to School Program to your local public school, visit the Fairfax County Public Schools website.

  • Take 12 Health Initiative: The Take 12 program is designed to help children and adults make important lifestyle changes, accomplish healthy goals each month, and experience fitness and wellness programs offered across Fairfax County.

Get Involved

To join the Active Living Priority Issue Team, email us or call us at 703-246-8856, TTY 711.


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