The Washington D.C. metro area is the fittest of America’s 50 most populous metropolitan areas according to the American College of Sports Medicine’s (ACSM) American Fitness Index™ (AFI).
The 2009 AFI report, “Health and Community Fitness Status of the 50 Largest Metropolitan Areas,“ is a snapshot of the state of health and fitness in America’s most populous metropolitan areas.
The AFI data report reflects a composite of preventive health behaviors, levels of chronic disease conditions, health care access, as well as community resources and policies that support physical activity. In addition to a data report, AFI is a program designed to help communities identify opportunities to improve the health of their residents and expand community assets to better support active, healthy lifestyles.
Based on figures related to healthy lifestyles and physical activity, the Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA) of Washington-Arlington-Alexandria scored 74.4 in the AFI data report to achieve the top ranking. Metro areas completing the top five were Minneapolis-St. Paul, Denver, Boston and San Francisco, which finished at the top of the inaugural rankings in 2008. Seattle, ACSM’s host city for its 2009 Annual Meeting, along with the surrounding MSA, finished sixth.
The western United States dominated the top 10, with only three cities lying east of the Mississippi River. The nation’s largest cities finished in the middle of the pack with New York at 22nd, Chicago at 25th and Los Angeles at 30th.
For a complete list, ranking and score for the 50 metro areas included in the report click here.