Why We Measure
The big outcome metrics (like obesity rate and life expectancy) are slow to move and affected by dozens of factors outside our control. The small input metrics (park program participation and YMCA memberships) are too limited and lack the nuance to give you any indication of real success — at least when it comes to what matters most. Many communities simply have no idea how their constituents behave, how they feel, and what they think about community culture, activities, and assets. So, where do we turn? The Playon Active Lifestyle Assessment (ALA).
The Active Lifestyle Assessment
Playon Communities has developed a unique research program that gets communities the big data they need for tracking, reporting, and making smart decisions. As you continue to build programs and assets that are custom-tailored to your community, the Playon Active Living Assesment creates both a feedback loop and an index of success on all the most important measures.
Our community research program combines methods, audiences, and types of data to give your community a whole view of the active lifestyle, how you compare to other communities like yours, and important strategies for improvement. We break down the assessment into 3 general categories: Attitudes, Behaviors, and Interests.
What’s more important when building a healthy community: knowing the number of assets folks have available, or knowing whether folks feel like they have access to what they need to live active? We have to learn the attitudes of your community if we want to understand the “why” behind behaviors and health outcomes. We firmly believe that developing an active culture means developing a citizenry that has agency and ownership over their own health. The Playon ALA develops a profile of attitudes on “Self,” on “Culture,” and on “Assets” that changes the way decisions are made forever.
We know that health outcomes data moves at a glacial pace and is informed by hundreds of unforeseeable externalities. The ALA tracks the metrics we can control but rarely collect. We learn about behaviors as they relate to exercise, participation, group membership, and asset/program usage. We build a community profile that looks at those numbers as they relate to demographics and geography to shine a light on what were previously blind spots.
Of course, how do we make decisions about assets and infrastructure if we don’t know people’s interests? We guess and check and it costs us all tons of time and money. The Playon ALA assesses interests by activity/sport, level of competition, availability of assets, and scheduling. We use the data to put together recommendations and trends analysis that you can give out to every organization working to help make your community more active.
Start Your Assessment
At Playon, we have worked closely with community foundations and cities for over a decade. We understand your unique needs and we’d love to chat about how Playon Communities, and the Active Living Assessment, can help deliver you a more active, more measurable, and healthier community starting soon!
Reach out to schedule some time to chat. Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.