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Michael Pratt and Janet E. Fulton

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Prabasaj Paul, Susan A. Carlson, and Janet E. Fulton

Background:

The association between walking and environmental attributes depends on walking purpose. This study, based on a large survey of U.S. adults, examined the association between perceived neighborhood safety and built environment attributes, and walking for transportation and leisure.

Methods:

Data were obtained on transportation and leisure-time walking, perceived neighborhood safety and built environment attributes, and demographic characteristics from the summer wave of the 2012 ConsumerStyles survey of 3951 U.S. adults. Associations were examined by demographic characteristics.

Results:

Seventy-five percent of respondents reported walking for either transportation (54%) or leisure (56%) in the past week, 59% reported no safety concern, and 36% reported absence of any built environment attribute of walkability nearby. Respondents with more education, and those who lived in metropolitan areas were more likely to report built environment attributes supportive of walking. All built environment attributes examined, as well as safety concern due to speeding vehicles, were associated with walking after adjustment for demographic characteristics.

Conclusion:

Walking, particularly for transportation, is associated with many built environment attributes among U.S. adults. These attributes may be important to consider when designing and modifying the built environment of communities, especially those which are less walkable.

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Richard Lowry, Sarah M. Lee, Janet E. Fulton, and Laura Kann

Background:

To help inform policies and programs, a need exists to understand the extent to which Healthy People 2010 objectives for physical activity, physical education (PE), and television (TV) viewing among adolescents are being achieved.

Methods:

As part of the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System, 5 national school-based surveys were conducted biennially from 1999 through 2007. Each survey used a 3-stage cross-sectional sample of students in grades 9 to 12 and provided self-reported data from approximately 14,000 students. Logistic regression models that controlled for sex, race/ethnicity, and grade were used to analyze secular trends.

Results:

During 1999 to 2007, prevalence estimates for regular participation in moderate and vigorous physical activity, participation in daily PE classes, and being physically active in PE classes did not change significantly among female, male, white, black, or Hispanic students. In contrast, the prevalence of TV viewing for 2 or fewer hours on a school day increased significantly among female, male, white, black, and Hispanic students and among students in every grade except 12th grade.

Conclusions:

Among US adolescents, no significant progress has been made toward increasing participation in physical activity or school PE classes; however, improvements have been made in reducing TV viewing time.

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Carmen D. Harris, Prabasaj Paul, Xingyou Zhang, and Janet E. Fulton

Background:

Fewer than 30% of U.S. youth meet the recommendation to be active > 60 minutes/day. Access to parks may encourage higher levels of physical activity.

Purpose:

To examine differences in park access among U.S. school-age youth, by demographic characteristics and urbanicity of block group.

Methods:

Park data from 2012 were obtained from TomTom, Incorporated. Population data were obtained from the 2010 U.S. Census and American Community Survey 2006–2010. Using a park access score for each block group based on the number of national, state or local parks within one-half mile, we examined park access among youth by majority race/ethnicity, median household income, median education, and urbanicity of block groups.

Results:

Overall, 61.3% of school-age youth had park access—64.3% in urban, 36.5% in large rural, 37.8% in small rural, and 35.8% in isolated block groups. Park access was higher among youth in block groups with higher median household income and higher median education.

Conclusion:

Urban youth are more likely to have park access. However, park access also varies by race/ethnicity, median education, and median household. Considering both the demographics and urbanicity may lead to better characterization of park access and its association with physical activity among youth.

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Richard Lowry, Sarah M. Lee, Deborah A. Galuska, Janet E. Fulton, Lisa C. Barrios, and Laura Kann

Background:

Few studies have focused on the relationship between physical activity-related (PA) injury and overweight among youth.

Methods:

We analyzed data from the 2001 and 2003 Youth Risk Behavior Surveys (n = 28,815). Logistic regression was used to examine the independent effects of BMI and frequency of participation in vigorous activity, moderate activity, strengthening exercises, physical education (PE) classes, and team sports on the likelihood of PA injury.

Results:

Approximately 14% of females and 19% of males reported seeing a doctor or nurse during the previous 30 d for an injury that happened while exercising or playing sports. PA injury was associated with participation in team sports, strengthening exercises, and (among females) vigorous physical activity. Controlling for type and frequency of physical activity, injury was not associated with being overweight (BMI ≥ 95th percentile).

Conclusions:

Moderate physical activity and school PE classes may provide relatively low-risk alternatives for overweight youth who need to increase their physical activity.

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Jaime J. Gahche, Brian K. Kit, Janet E. Fulton, Dianna D. Carroll, and Thomas Rowland

Background:

Nationally representative normative values for cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) have not been described for US children since the mid 1980s.

Objective:

To provide sex- and age-specific normative values for CRF of US children aged 6–11 years.

Methods:

Data from 624 children aged 6–11 years who participated in the CRF testing as part of the 2012 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey National Youth Fitness Survey, a cross-sectional survey, were analyzed. Participants were assigned to one of three age-specific protocols and asked to exercise to volitional fatigue. The difficulty of the protocols increased with successive age groups. CRF was assessed as maximal endurance time (min:sec). Data analysis was conducted in 2016.

Results:

For 6–7, 8–9, 10–11 year olds, corresponding with the age-specific protocols, mean endurance time was 12:10 min:sec (95% CI: 11:49–12:31), 11:16 min:sec (95% CI: 11:00–11:31), and 10:01 min:sec (95% CI: 9:37–10:25), respectively. Youth in the lowest 20th percentile for endurance time were more likely to be obese, to report less favorable health, and to report greater than two hours of screen time per day.

Conclusions:

These data may serve as baseline estimates to monitor trends over time in CRF among US children aged 6–11 years.

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Susan A. Carlson, Kathleen B. Watson, Prabasaj Paul, Thomas L. Schmid, and Janet E. Fulton

Background:

Information about how presence and usefulness of neighborhood supports for walking differs by demographic characteristics can help guide community strategies to promote walking.

Methods:

Reported presence and usefulness of neighborhood supports (shops, transit stops, sidewalks, parks, interesting things to look at, well-lit at night, low crime rate, and cars following speed limit) were examined in 3973 U.S. adults who completed the 2014 SummerStyles survey.

Results:

Percentage reporting neighborhood supports as present ranged from 25.3% (SE = 0.8) for interesting things to 55.8% (SE = 1.0) for low crime rate. Percentage who reported a support as useful ranged from 24.6% (SE = 1.4) for transit stops to 79.0% (SE = 1.1) for sidewalks among those with the support. This percentage ranged from 13.4% (SE = 0.8) for transit stops to 52.8% (SE = 1.1) for shops among those without the support. One or more demographic differences were observed for the presence of each support, and the presence of all supports differed by education and metro status. Demographic patterns were less clear when examining usefulness and patterns often differed by support type and presence.

Conclusions:

Presence and usefulness of neighborhood supports for walking can differ by type and demographic characteristics. Recognizing these difference can help communities plan and implement strategies to promote walking.

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Simani M. Price, Judith McDivitt, Deanne Weber, Lisa S. Wolff, Holly A. Massett, and Janet E. Fulton

Background:

Despite the potential benefits of reducing the risk of osteoporosis in later life, research on adolescent girls’ weight-bearing physical activity (WBPA) is limited. This study explores correlates for WBPA in this population.

Methods:

A nationally representative telephone survey sponsored by the National Bone Health Campaign was conducted with 1000 girls age 9 to 12 years and a parent. Girls’ physical activities were coded as weight bearing or not and correlated with cognitive, social, and environmental variables.

Results:

Regression analysis revealed that WBPA was significantly associated with self-reported parents’ education, parental self-efficacy, girls’ normative beliefs about time spent in physical activity, being physically active with a parent, having physically active friends, and perceived availability of after-school physical activities.

Conclusions:

Interventions encouraging parents to participate in WBPA with their daughters and increasing parents’ positive attitudes and self-efficacy in getting their daughters to be physically active should be tested.