About the Program: Pilot Study

While no country in the developed world has been successful in reversing the alarming trend of rising levels of overweight and obesity, this project fits within the international policy focus on reducing the rate of increase in obesity and on delivery of self-management programs at the community level. The 'Waist' Disposal Challenge (WDC) consists of a health intervention at the community level to bring about a reduction in Body Mass Index (BMI) as a primary outcome.


  1. To reduce Body Mass Index (BMI)
  2. To improve dietary intake, physical activity, general well being and quality of life

BMI Explained

Is your weight healthy? BMI = Weight (kg) / [Height (m) x Height (m)]

BMI Categories

Less than 18.5
18.5 - 24.9
25.0 - 29.9
30.0 - 34.9
Severely obese
35.0 or more

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Program Levels

The program consisted of 3 levels of intervention.

Level 1: Educational Presentations

Level 2: BMI Competition Between Clubs

Level 3: Telephone Lifestyle Coaching

Pilot Study Results

Save the Whale

The challenge was launched in April 2007 as a pilot in 23 Rotary clubs of District 9460 comprising a membership of over 700 Rotarians. The results were very encouraging and Rotarians had a lot of fun losing weight.


Metro Clubs (9) Rural Clubs (14)
Applecross Albany East
Attadale Albany Port
Cockburn Bunbury
Fremantle City Bunbury Central
Mandurah Bunbury Leshenault
Mandurah Districts South Bunbury
Melville Busselton Geog Bay
Palm Beach Collie
Rockingham Esperance
Esperance Bay
Margaret River
Mount Barker
The Waist Disposal Challenge trophy

Educational Presentations

Feedback showed increased awareness and motivation for changing diet and physical activity habits.

BMI Competition Between Clubs

Most clubs had 50% or more of their members lose weight, with three clubs having 70% of their members decrease their BMI within twelve months. A Leader Board was established.

Telephone Lifestyle Coaching

Coaching helped participants to achieve:


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