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  • Author: Jennifer D. Roberts x
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Jennifer D. Roberts, Lindsey Rodkey, Rashawn Ray and Brian E. Saelens

Background: Although the active transportation (AT) indicator received an F grade on the 2016 US Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth, this AT assessment excluded public transportation. An objective of the Built Environment and Active Play Study was to assess youth AT, including public transportation, among Washington, DC area children in relation to parental perceptions of neighborhood built environment (BE) variables. Methods: Questionnaires were mailed to 2000 parents of children aged 7–12 years. AT to school (ATS) was assessed with the question: “In an average school week, how many days does your child use each of the following ways to get to and from school? (a) Walk; (b) Bike; (c) Car; (d) Bus or Metro.” Parental perceived BE data were obtained through questionnaire items, and logistic regression was conducted to determine if BE variables were associated with youth ATS. Results: The sample included 144 children (50% female; average age 9.7 years; 56.3% white; 23.7% African American; 10.4% Asian American). Over 30% used ATS-public transportation 5 days per week, and nearly 13% used ATS-walking daily. Parental perceived BE variables significantly predicted youth ATS-walking and ATS-public transportation. Conclusions: ATS-public transportation is common among Washington, DC area youth, and parental perceptions of BE can significantly predict ATS.

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Robin C. Puett, Dina Huang, Jessica Montresor-Lopez, Rashawn Ray and Jennifer D. Roberts

Background: Sociodemographic and environmental factors play important roles in determining both indoor and outdoor play activities in children. Methods: The Built Environment and Active Play Study assessed neighborhood playability for children (7–12 y), based on parental report of their children’s active play behaviors, neighborhood characteristics, and geographic locations. Simple logistic regression modeling tested the associations between sociodemographic characteristics and the frequency of and access to venues for indoor and outdoor play. Results: Children of higher socioeconomic status were almost 3 times more likely to live more than a 30-minute walk from indoor recreational facilities compared with their less affluent peers (odds ratio [OR] = 2.9; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.2–6.8). Non-Hispanic black children were less likely to live more than 30 minutes from indoor facilities (OR = 0.21; 95% CI, 0.08–0.57) and more were likely to engage in indoor activity (OR = 3.40; 95% CI, 1.17–9.88) than were white children. Boys were substantially more likely to play outdoors at a playing fields compared with girls (OR = 5.37; 95% CI, 2.10–13.69). Conclusions: Findings from this study could be used to enhance indoor and outdoor activity spaces for children and to reduce disparities in access to such spaces.

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Jeffrey J. VanWormer, Jennifer A. Linde, Lisa J. Harnack, Steven D. Stovitz and Robert W. Jeffery


Some evidence suggests that physical activity programs mainly attract employees who are already active. This study examined the degree to which baseline physical activity was associated with enrollment in worksite walking clubs.


All variables were measured at baseline. Walking club participation was measured over 2 years. There were 642 individuals from 3 worksites with complete data available for logistic regression analyses.


Baseline physical activity [OR (95% CI) = 1.00 (0.99, 1.01)] was not a significant predictor of walking club participation. Participants who were older [OR = 1.03 (1.01, 1.04)] or indicated more social support for physical activity [OR = 1.13 (1.02, 1.25)] had significantly higher odds of participation relative to those who were younger or indicated less social support, respectively. In addition, men [OR = –0.25 (0.18, 0.36)] and employees from the second worksite [OR = –0.41 (0.25, 0.67)] had significantly lower odds of participation relative to women and employees from the first or third worksites, respectively. Sensitivity analyses arrived at similar conclusions.


Worksite walking clubs were appealing across varying levels of physical activity. Future research should improve marketing and program design to engage harder-to-reach segments of the workforce, particularly young men and those with limited social support.

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Jason J. Rutkowski, Robert J. Robertson, Wayland D. Tseh, Jennifer L. Caputo, Daniel J. Keefer, Kristin M. Sutika and Donald W. Morgan

The purpose of this investigation was to determine whether either the differentiated ratings of perceived exertion (RPE) for the legs (RPE-L) or chest (RPE-C) were higher than the overall body RPE (RPE-O) in children performing treadmill walking. A differentiated RPE that was higher than the RPE-O was considered the dominant perceptual signal. Thirty-one 10-year-old participants (16 boys, 15 girls) performed six separate 5-min bouts of level treadmill walking at different speeds. During each bout of exercise, RPEs were recorded using the modified Children’s OMNI Scale. Oxygen consumption (VO2), heart rate (HR), and ventilation (VE) were measured during Minutes 4 and 5 at each walking speed. VO2, HR, and VE increased as walking speed increased, as did perceived exertion. No differences were observed among RPE-O, RPE-L, and RPE-C at any speed. In addition, boys and girls exhibited similar responses for each perceptual and physiological variable. In conclusion, a dominant differentiated perceptual rating was not found at slow-to-moderate treadmill walking speeds for either boys or girls. Neither the respiratory–metabolic nor peripheral ratings of perceived exertion appeared to dominate the whole-body sensory-integration process in this sample.

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Matthew C. Hoch, David R. Mullineaux, Richard D. Andreatta, Robert A. English, Jennifer M. Medina-McKeon, Carl G. Mattacola and Patrick O. McKeon


A single talocrural joint-mobilization treatment has improved spatiotemporal measures of postural control but not ankle arthrokinematics in individuals with chronic ankle instability (CAI). However, the effects of multiple treatment sessions on these aspects of function have not been investigated.


To examine the effect of a 2-wk anterior-to-posterior joint-mobilization intervention on instrumented measures of single-limb-stance static postural control and ankle arthrokinematics in adults with CAI.


Repeated measures.


Research laboratory.


12 individuals with CAI (6 male, 6 female; age 27.4 ± 4.3 y, height 175.4 ± 9.78 cm, mass 78.4 ± 11.0 kg).


Subjects received 6 treatments sessions of talocrural grade II joint traction and grade III anterior-to-posterior joint mobilization over 2 wk.

Main Outcome Measures:

Instrumented measures of single-limb-stance static postural control (eyes open and closed) and anterior and posterior talar displacement and stiffness were assessed 1 wk before the intervention (baseline), before the first treatment (preintervention), 24–48 h after the final treatment (postintervention), and 1 wk later (1-wk follow-up). Postural control was analyzed as center-of-pressure velocity, center-of-pressure range, the mean of time-to-boundary minima, and standard deviation of time-to-boundary minima in the anteroposterior and mediolateral directions for each visual condition.


No significant differences were identified in any measures of postural control (P > .08) or ankle arthrokinematics (P > .21).


The 2-wk talocrural joint-mobilization intervention did not alter instrumented measures of single-limb-stance postural control or ankle arthrokinematics. Despite the absence of change in these measures, this study continues to clarify the role of talocrural joint mobilization as a rehabilitation strategy for patients with CAI.

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Jennifer R. O’Neill, Angela D. Liese, Robert E. McKeown, Bo Cai, Steven P. Cuffe, Elizabeth J. Mayer-Davis, Richard F. Hamman and Dana Dabelea

In this study, the relationship between physical activity (PA) and 3 self-concept constructs (physical abilities, physical appearance, and general self-concept) was examined. Youth with type 1 diabetes (n = 304), type 2 diabetes (n = 49), and nondiabetic controls (n = 127) aged 10−20 years wore pedometers over 7 days. Youth completed the Self-Description Questionnaire and correlation coefficients were calculated. Mean steps/day were 7413 ± 3415, 4959 ± 3474 and 6870 ± 3521 for type 1, type 2 and control youth, respectively. Significant correlations were found between steps/day and perception of physical abilities (r = .29; r = .31; r = .31) for type 1, type 2, and control youth, respectively. The other correlations were not significant. Among youth with type 2 diabetes, steps/day were significantly correlated with physical appearance (r = .46). The positive correlation between PA and physical abilities suggests a reciprocal relationship between behavior and perception.