Centre of Expertise Health Innovation

Research Group Healthy Lifestyle in a Supporting Environment

Getting enough exercise and eating a healthy diet are both equally important for good health. This is common knowledge. Yet many children and young people in the Netherlands still lead an unhealthy lifestyle. This has consequences, both personal and social. So how do you prevent this? Or, more precisely, how can you teach children to start moving more - and keep moving? And how can you encourage young people to make healthier food choices?

2019 Annual report (pdf)
About the research group


The research group focuses on promoting a healthy lifestyle among young people (ages 4-24 years) in the Haaglanden region by working together with current and future professionals and the target group to develop, evaluate and implement innovative products and programmes and services that promote physical activity and healthy food choices.


The research groups aims to work to promote a healthy lifestyle among young people ages 4 to 24 years through sustainable behaviour change. This behaviour change is achieved by converting knowledge about movement, diet, behaviour change, technology, interaction design and pedagogy into innovative products and programmes and services that consciously and/or subconsciously inspire children and young people to lead a health lifestyle. These efforts are based on a belief in the power of seduction and implicit learning, alongside persuasion and explicit learning. The innovations are integrally based on the desires, needs and perceptions of the target group and stakeholders. We work in a demand-driven and practice-oriented manner. That is why the research group works together closely with professionals in the field and the degree programmes and answers research questions originating directly from the professional field.

About the professor

dr. Sanne de Vries

Sanne graduated with a degree in Human Movement Sciences and Epidemiology from the VU University Amsterdam. From 2000 to 2013, she worked as a researcher and project leader at TNO. Sanne earned her PhD from the VU University Amsterdam in 2009 in Social Medicine with a thesis entitled 'Activity-friendly neighbourhoods for children'. Sanne has been involved in more than 75 research projects involving young people, movement and health and has published more than 200 scientific reports. Her primary focus is on the role of the physical environment in movement behaviour, physical education and ‘nudging’, as well as the assessment of physical activity in young people.

06 - 46 87 68 52

Sanne de Vries’s additional positions 

  • Member of the Interventions Recognition Committee, sub-committee 5, Sports Management 
  •  Chair of the SIA Platform of Lecturers; Sports Management
  • Member of the Youth Health Care Directive on Posture and Exercise
  • Guest Editor 


Blogs of a researcher

Conducting the research. Most students find it ‘boring. And difficult’. In this monthly blog I will share with you my experiences as a researcher. What challenges I encounter and how I resolve these issues. I will show you that res...

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