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Let’s Get Moving - introducing a new physical activity care pathway

  • Last modified date:
    10 February 2010

The new Let's Get Moving (LGM) physical activity care pathway is based on the principles of the NICE public health guidance 2006: Four Commonly Used Methods to Promote Physical Activity, which endorses the delivery of brief interventions for physical activity in primary care as both clinically and cost effective in the long term. 

The launch of LGM provides a unique opportunity to embed the promotion of physical activity at the very core of the NHS, offering a major opportunity for health professionals to make a significant difference to the health of our nation.

The Secretary of State for Health would like PCT's to consider the benefits of including physical activity in their 2010/11 commissioning proposals.

To order a hard copy version of the Let's Get Moving commissioning guidance, please contact the DH order line via the attached link or call: 0300 123 1002, quoting ref: 292321.

Let's Get Moving - tried and tested

LGM has been tested in a feasibility trial in 14 surgeries by the British Heart Foundation National Centre for Physical Activity and Health, Loughborough University.  The results of the trial demonstrated that LGM is feasible for delivery in primary care, and subject to recommendations, is suitable for wide-scale implementation. LGM is now available to the NHS for commissioning.

Let's Get Moving - introduction to commissioning

Physical activity is an independent risk factor to ill health.  It can be used effectively by the NHS to manage and prevent over 20 conditions and diseases, including: coronary heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, cancer, obesity, mental health problems and musculoskeletal conditions.

Implementation of LGM:

  • Can support PCT's in working to meet Vital Signs Indicator and Local Area Agreement (LAA) targets
  • Can be integrated within other health programmes such as NHS Health Check, Weight Management and can support Stop Smoking adherence
  • Can be used within the general practice setting for both prevention and management of inactivity-related chronic disease in adults
  • Can support general practice in working to achieve QOF cardiovascular disease indicators, PP2 in particular

Let’s Get Moving can be commissioned by PCT's or through practice-based commissioning.  PCT's can decide whether they wish to commission LGM as part of their strategy to improve the health of their local population and towards meeting Vital Sign indicators and LAA targets.  The service can be tailored by PCT's and practice based commissioners to meet their local needs:

  • By targeting specific population groups or geographic areas.  LGM might be commissioned across the whole PCT, or used selectively, for example in a selection of wards, to tackle areas with high levels of health inequality
  • As a solution to meet the needs of other initiatives such as NHS Health Checks. 

Let's Get Moving Frequently Asked Questions and Powerpoint presentation

The following resources are available to support commissioning and delivery of LGM:

Let’s Get Moving - patient resource

Due to the limited availability of LGM resources, the patient pack should be ordered by PCTs and appropriate healthcare professionals who have already completed the LGM training. It’s highly recommended that LGM training be implemented prior to using the LGM patient pack, as this will form an important and essential part of the overall Let’s Get Moving delivery process.

It’s recommended that the LGM patient support pack is offered to every individual who:

  • Chooses to become more active through the abridged version of the intervention;  or
  • Chooses to take up the longer brief intervention.

Patients who choose not to participate in the intervention and leave after being screened are provided with a generic British Heart Foundation (BHF) physical activity leaflet.

The LGM patient pack is designed to support patients in their efforts to become more active and contains helpful hints, practical examples, simple visual tools and personal planning exercises (practitioners might also wish to use the resource to guide patients towards becoming more active).

The pack has templates for relevant local information on indoor and outdoor activity opportunities - instructions / example templates also attached.  These templates should be completed locally, printed and inserted into the LGM patient pack prior to distribution to service deliverers. Maps of local walking routes and green space are another supportive tool that can be included in the patient pack: these were very well received by patients in the LGM feasibility pilot.

To assist with the completion of the attached indoor and outdoor activity templates, you can use the NHS Choices search tool below to help locate activities in your local area.

To order copies of the 'Let's Get Moving' patient support pack, please contact the DH order line  or call: 0300 123 1002, quoting ref: 298594.

General Practice Physical Activity Questionnaire - GPPAQ

LGM provides a physical activity care pathway which can be used by service proviers systematically to recruit patients and screen for inactivity using a validated questionnaire (GPPAQ).  Patients identifed as not meeting the CMO’s recommendations for physical activity will be offered a brief intervention, drawing upon motivational interviewing techniques, which:

  • takes a patient centred approach to highlighting the health benefits of physical activity;
  • works through key behaviour change stages; and
  • concludes with a clear physical activity goal set by the patient, identifying local opportunities to be active, including exercise on referral schemes where appropriate.

Particpating patients are then followed up over 3,6 and 12 months after the brief intervention to check progress, encourage and re-set goals.

Exercise on referral

Let’s Get Moving can act as a signposting option for exercise on referral and condition specific classes.

The NICE public health guidance 2006: four commonly used methods to promote physical activity, does not endorse the use of exercise on referral schemes for the general promotion of physical activity. Please refer to the DH statement on exercise referral.

Where NICE guidance promotes the use of condition-specific classes for specific conditions, this guidance should be followed. For example:

  • NICE clinical guideline 88 (2009), Early Management of Persistent Non-Specific Low Back Pain
  • NICE clinical guideline 12 (2004), Management of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease in Adults in Primary and Secondary Care
  • NICE clinical guideline 23 (2004, amended 2007), Depression: Management of Depression in Primary and Secondary Care
  • NICE public health guidance 16 (2008), Occupational Therapy Interventions and Physical Activity Interventions to Promote the Mental Wellbeing of Older People in Primary Care and Residential Care.

Let's Get Moving - training

The Department has developed a standardised Let’s Get Moving training package:

Training module 1 (three hours): comprehensively covers physical activity for health, and provides an overview of the pathway and an introduction to motivational interviewing (MI). This module enables providers to deliver an abridged (but not full) version of the LGM brief intervention. Module 1 can be delivered by a specitialist in the PCT.  Those specialists already accredited and experienced in MI who attend module 1 will be able to deliver a full LGM brief intervention. 

Training module 2 (1.5 days): develops MI skills.  When incorporated with module 1, this module will enable practitioners to provide the full LGM brief intervention.


  • In order to deliver the full LGM brief intervention, all providers (unless already MI trained), need to attend and complete both training modules 1 and 2. 
  • Module 2 training  - MUST be delivered by an accredited motivational interviewing trainer – please refer to the MINT register for details of accredited trainers at:

All LGM training materials are available to order from the Department of Health orderline tel: 0300 123 1002.  Please note – due to ordering restrictions, LGM training materials cannot be ordered online via the DH orderline.

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