Out of School Nutrition and Physical Activity (OSNAP) Initiative

The Out of School Nutrition and Physical Activity (OSNAP) Initiative, works with out of school time (OST) programs to improve nutrition- and physical activity-related practices, environments, and policies.

OSNAP Logo

OSNAP promotes actions to help partner sites achieve the following goals: 1) include 30 minutes of moderate, fun, physical activity for every child every day; offer 20 minutes of vigorous physical activity three times per week; 2) ban sugar-sweetened drinks from being served or brought to program; 3) offer water as a beverage at snack every day; 4) eliminate use of commercial broadcast TV/movies; limit recreational computer time to less than one hour per day; 5) offer a fruit or vegetable option every day; and 6) ban foods with trans fats.Young girl in red t-shirt swinging

With our community partners, OSNAP identifies and supports sustainable policy and environmental strategies that promote increased access to healthy snacks and opportunities for physical activity that can be used in a variety of OST settings.

Researchers have examined students’ physical activity levels and snack and beverage intake through accelerometer wear, examination of plate waste, on-site observations, and policy analysis at baseline and at the end of the school year.

Young boy eating a green appleThe OSNAP initiative has been broadly disseminated throughout Massachusetts; tools and resources are available on our interactive website to help afterschool programs introduce healthy snacks and drinks and encourage physical activity in their programs. The OSNAP online program assessments, learning communities, and action planning process help guide afterschool program staff and organizational leaders through the process of improving out of school time program practices and policies related to healthy foods, drinks, and physical activity.

Currently, researchers are studying the effectiveness and cost of two training models, an in-person train-the-trainer strategy and an interactive online strategy, for scaling up the OSNAP intervention nationally via a partnership with the YMCA.


Full Website: osnap.org

OSNAP Effectiveness Trial
Principal Investigator: Steven Gortmaker, PhD
Funder: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Funding Dates: 2009 – 2015
Contact: Rebekka Lee

OSNAP Dissemination Study
Principal Investigator: Rebekka Lee, ScD
Funder: National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health
Funding Dates: 2016-present
Contact: Rebekka Lee


Peer-Reviewed Publications