Physical Activity for Every Body: A Model for Managing Weight Stigma and Creating Body-Inclusive Spaces Academic Article uri icon


  • © 2017 National Association for Kinesiology in Higher Education (NAKHE). Modern cultural idealizations of thin bodies have created a climate in which fat individuals are stigmatized in physical activity spaces. Given the unwelcoming climate of these spaces, many individuals are unlikely to engage in and benefit from regular physical activity. As such, a new model for physical activity spaces is needed to engage and retain a largely marginalized population. In the current article, the authors give a brief review of the complex relationships among body weight, stigma, health, and physical activity, arguing that the current model underserves larger individuals. Using a Health at Every Size paradigm, the authors then argue for the creation of body-inclusive spaces as a means of encouraging greater participation and outline a model that encourages greater access to the benefits of physical activity to all bodies. Implications for research and practice are discussed.

author list (cited authors)

  • Pickett, A. C., & Cunningham, G. B.

citation count

  • 19

publication date

  • January 2017

published in