Journal of Primary Health Care Journal of Primary Health Care Society
Journal of The Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners
RESEARCH ARTICLE (Open Access)

Ngātiwai Whakapakari Tinana: strengthening bodies through a Kaupapa Māori fitness and exercise programme

Kyle Eggleton 1 2 , Lynette Stewart 2 , Atarangi Kask 2
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

1 University of Auckland, General Practice and Primary Health Care, Auckland, New Zealand

2 Ki A Ora Ngātiwai, Whangarei, New Zealand

Correspondence to: Kyle Eggleton, 420 Kamo Rd, Kamo, Whangarei, New Zealand. Email: k.eggleton@auckland.ac.nz

Journal of Primary Health Care 10(1) 25-30 https://doi.org/10.1071/HC17068
Published: 29 March 2018

Journal Compilation © Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners 2018.
This is an open access article licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Activity based weight loss programmes may result in modest reductions in weight. Despite the small successes demonstrated by these interventions, there are few examples that specifically address the disparity of obesity for Māori compared to non-Māori.

AIM: This research highlights the results of a Kaupapa Māori fitness and exercise programme that aimed to assist mainly Māori adults, to lose weight. The programme was designed to support participants by using Māori cultural values.

METHODS: A Muay Thai kickboxing exercise programme was developed with community involvement. Kaupapa Māori principles underpinned the programme, such as whanaungatanga and tino rangatiratanga. Ninety-three participants were followed for at least 3 months. Participants’ blood pressure, weight, body mass index, mental wellbeing scores, and waist and hip circumferences were collected at regular intervals. Multiple linear models were used to calculate estimated changes per 100 days of the programme.

RESULTS: The mean duration of participation was 214 days. The estimated weight loss per participant per 100 days was 5.2 kg. Statistically significant improvements were noted in blood pressure, waist and hip circumference, systolic blood pressure and mental wellbeing.

DISCUSSION: The improvements in physical and mental wellbeing are thought to have stemmed, in part, from the use of Kaupapa Māori principles. The success of this programme strengthens the argument that programmes aiming to address the precursors of chronic disease need to be designed for Māori by Māori in order to reduce health inequities.

KEYWORDS: Obesity; Weight loss; Kaupapa Māori


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