A project of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women's Health

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About BodyWorks


Questions? Comments?

Contact us at bodyworks@hagersharp.com.

BodyWorks is a community-based healthy lifestyle program designed to help parents and caregivers of teens and preteens improve family eating and physical activity. 

BodyWorks is:

  • an 8-week program
  • lead by a trained community member
  • for parents of children 9 – 14 years old, who set positive examples for their kids
  • available in either English or Spanish
  • focused on increasing healthy eating and physical activity
  • evidence-based

BodyWorks provides parents and caregivers with tools and information to help their family make small, specific changes in the way they eat and are physically active. These changes can help maintain a healthy weight.

Research strongly suggests parents play a critical role in shaping the exercise and eating habits of their children. Therefore the primary audience for the BodyWorks program is parents.

The main BodyWorks messages are:

  • Healthy teens become strong adults.
  • Parents play a critical role in shaping their children's eating and activity habits.
  • Behavior change takes time – begin by taking small steps for lasting changes.

The BodyWorks program uses a train-the-trainer model to train new BodyWorks program leaders. In a 1-day training session, a community member learns how to lead an 8-week program with families and also how to train other community members to be BodyWorks program leaders. 

BodyWorks program leaders often work at community-based organizations, state health agencies, non-profit organizations, health clinics, hospitals, and health care systems.

The Office on Women's Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, developed BodyWorks following several years of formative research. The BodyWorks program has been independently evaluated several times.

BodyWorks is moving into a new phase! The Office on Women's Health will no longer maintain the BodyWorks program after December 2016.

This doesn't mean BodyWorks must end. We encourage you to continue (or begin) leading programs in your communities.

The BodyWorks toolkit materials will remain on womenshealth.gov for you to view and download until Friday, December 30, 2016. If you would like to print them professionally, please email bodyworks@hagersharp.com to request the design files.

Content last updated: May 28, 2013.

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