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  • Author: Rodrigo S. Reis x
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Claudia O. Alberico, J. Aaron Hipp and Rodrigo S. Reis

Background: Socioeconomic characteristics of locations where physical activity equipment is installed may affect the activity level of users. The purpose of this study was to verify patterns of use and physical activity levels in fitness zones installed in low- and high-income neighborhoods in the city of Curitiba, Brazil. Methods: Over 1200 observations were conducted in 20 fitness zones in the city of Curitiba, Brazil. Data were collected during the months of November and December 2012, in 4 periods of the day (8 AM, 11 AM, 2 PM, and 5 PM), on 2 weekdays and 2 weekend days. Results: A total of 2232 people were observed in the fitness zones. Age group, level of physical activity in the area, use of fitness zones during weekend days, and occupation of spaces were significantly associated with neighborhood income. Moreover, users of fitness zones located in high-income neighborhoods showed higher odds ratio (OR = 1.74; 95% confidence interval, 1.46–2.07) of moderate to vigorous physical activity than light or sedentary activities, regardless of gender or day of the week. Conclusions: The sole presence of equipment does not seem to favor the use of fitness zones in low-income neighborhoods. Future studies should investigate intrinsic factors for the use of fitness zones for physical activity.

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Deborah Salvo, Rodrigo S. Reis, Adriano A.F. Hino, Pedro C. Hallal and Michael Pratt

Background:

There is little understanding about which sets of environmental features could simultaneously predict intensity-specific leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) among Brazilians. The objectives were to identify the environmental correlates for intensity-specific LTPA, and to build the best-fit linear models to predict intensity-specific LTPA among adults of Curitiba, Brazil.

Methods:

Cross sectional study in Curitiba, Brazil (2009, n = 1461). The International Physical Activity Questionnaire and Abbreviated Neighborhood Environment Assessment Scale were used. Ninety-two perceived environment variables were categorized in 10 domains. LTPA was classified as walking for leisure (LWLK), moderate-intensity leisure-time PA (MLPA), vigorous-intensity leisure-time PA (VLPA), and moderate-to-vigorous intensity leisure-time PA (MVLPA). Best fitting linear predictive models were built.

Results:

Forty environmental variables were correlated to at least 1 LTPA outcome. The variability explained by the 4 best-fit models ranged from 17% (MLPA) to 46% (MVLPA). All models contained recreation areas and aesthetics variables; none included residential density predictors. At least 1 neighborhood satisfaction variable was present in each of the intensity-specific models, but not for overall MVLPA.

Conclusions:

This study demonstrates the simultaneous effect of sets of perceived environmental features on intensity-specific LTPA among Brazilian adults. The differences found compared with high-income countries suggest caution in generalizing results across settings.

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Adriano Akira Ferreira Hino, Rodrigo S. Reis, Isabela C. Ribeiro, Diana C. Parra, Ross C. Brownson and Rogerio C. Fermino

Background:

Open public spaces have been identified as important facilities to promote physical activity (PA) at the community level. The main goals of this study are to describe open public spaces user's characteristics and to explore to what extent these characteristics are associated with PA behavior.

Methods:

A system of direct observation was used to evaluate the PA levels on parks and squares (smaller parks) and users's characteristics (gender and age). The 4 parks and 4 squares observed were selected from neighborhoods with different socioeconomic status and environmental characteristics. The settings were observed 3 times a day, 6 days per week, during 2 weeks.

Results:

More men than women were observed in parks (63.1%) and squares (70.0%) as well as more adults and adolescents than older adults and children. Users were more physically active in parks (men = 34.1%, women = 36.1%) than in squares (men = 25.5%, women 22.8%).

Conclusions:

The characteristics of public open spaces may affect PA in the observed places. Initiatives to improve PA levels in community settings should consider users' characteristics and preferences to be more effective and reach a larger number of people.

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Pedro C. Hallal, Rodrigo S. Reis, Diana C. Parra, Christine Hoehner, Ross C. Brownson and Eduardo J. Simões

Background:

To evaluate the association between perceived environmental factors and leisure-time and transport-related physical activity.

Methods:

A random-digit-dialing telephone cross-sectional survey in Recife, Brazil, was conducted among individuals aged 16 years or older (n = 2046). Leisure-time and transport-related physical activity were measured using the long version of the International Physical Activity Questionnaire. Three outcome variables were used: leisure-time physical activity (min/wk), transport-related physical activity (min/wk), and walking for leisure (min/wk). A cutoff of 150 min/wk was used for all outcome variables. The environmental module of the questionnaire was based on the short version of the Neighborhood Environment Walkability Scale (A-NEWS), and included 12 environmental items.

Results:

The proportions of subjects reaching the 150-minutes per week threshold were 30.6% for leisure-time physical activity, 26.6% for transport-related physical activity and 18.2% for walking for leisure. Lack of sidewalks and low access to recreational facilities were associated with a lower likelihood of performing 150 minutes per week or more of leisure-time physical activity. Lack of sidewalks was associated with low levels of walking for leisure. Neighborhood aesthetics was inversely associated with transport-related physical activity.

Conclusions:

Lack of sidewalks and low access to recreational facilities were predictors of low levels of leisure-time physical activity, suggesting that policy strategies aimed at improving these environmental features may be warranted.

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Ana Carina Naldino Cassou, Rogerio Fermino, Ciro Romélio Rodriguez Añez, Mariana Silva Santos, Marlos R. Domingues and Rodrigo S. Reis

Background:

The aim of this study was to identify barriers to physical activity among elderly Brazilian women of different socioeconomic status (SES).

Methods:

A focus-group approach was employed. Subjects were aged, on average, 69.9 years (±6.9; n = 25). SES was measured based on a structured interview and women were grouped according to SES classification. Content analysis was used to categorize mentions of barriers to physical activities followed by descriptive analysis of absolute and relative frequencies of similar reports.

Results:

Most common barriers among high-SES elderly women were those within “psychological, cognitive, and emotional” dimensions (33.8%) and “environmental” (29.2%). Among women from lower SES, barriers were inversely ranked, the highest prevalence was verified for environmental (33.8%) and “psychological, cognitive, and emotional” dimensions (25%).

Conclusions:

The results highlight that barriers perception varies according to women’s SES, indicating that physical activity promotion strategies must address such differences.

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Rodrigo S. Reis, Pedro C. Hallal, Diana C. Parra, Isabela C. Ribeiro, Ross C. Brownson, Michael Pratt, Christine M. Hoehner and Luiz Ramos

Background:

Community programs have been suggested to be an important and promising strategy for physical activity (PA) promotion. Limited evidence is available regarding knowledge of and participation in these programs in Latin America.

Objective:

To describe participation in and knowledge of community PA programs and to explore associations with leisure-time PA in the city of Curitiba, Brazil.

Methods:

A cross sectional telephone survey was conducted among adults in Curitiba, Brazil (n = 2097). The International Physical Activity Questionnaire was used to determine levels of PA, and specific questions were used to evaluate the extent to which respondents knew about or participated in the programs conducted by the municipality. Logistic regression was used to assess the meeting of PA recommendations in leisure time based on program knowledge and participation.

Results:

Knowledge of PA programs was high (91.6%) and 5.6% of population participated in the programs. After adjusting for individual characteristics, exposure to Curitiba's PA community programs was associated with leisure-time PA (POR = 2.9, 95% CI = 2.9−3.0) and walking for leisure (POR = 2.4; 95% CI = 2.3−2.4). The associations were stronger among men than among women.

Conclusions:

Knowledge and participation in Curitiba's community PA programs were associated with meeting recommended levels of PA in leisure time.

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Pedro C. Hallal, Luis Fernando Gomez, Diana C. Parra, Felipe Lobelo, Janeth Mosquera, Alex A. Florindo, Rodrigo S. Reis, Michael Pratt and Olga L. Sarmiento

Background:

To describe the lessons learned after 10 years of use of the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ) in Brazil and Colombia, with special emphasis on recommendations for future research in Latin America using this instrument.

Methods:

We present an analytical commentary, based on data from a review of the Latin American literature, as well as expert consultation and the authors' experience in administering IPAQ to over 43,000 individuals in Brazil and Colombia between 1998 and 2008.

Results:

Validation studies in Latin America suggest that the IPAQ has high reliability and moderate criteria validity in comparison with accelerometers. Cognitive interviews suggested that the occupational and housework sections of the long IPAQ lead to confusion among respondents, and there is evidence that these sections generate overestimated scores of physical activity. Because the short IPAQ considers the 4 physical activity domains altogether, people tend to provide inaccurate answers to it as well.

Conclusions:

Use of the leisure-time and transport sections of the long IPAQ is recommended for surveillance and studies aimed at documenting physical activity levels in Latin America. Use of the short IPAQ should be avoided, except for maintaining consistency in surveillance when it has already been used at baseline.

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Inacio C. M. da Silva, Valerie L. C. Payne, Adriano Akira Hino, Andrea Ramirez Varela, Rodrigo S. Reis, Ulf Ekelund and Pedro C. Hallal

Background:

The aim of this study was to review the evidence to date on the association between physical activity and safety from crime.

Methods:

Articles with adult populations of 500+ participants investigating the association between physical activity and safety from crime were included. A methodological quality assessment was conducted using an adapted version of the Downs and Black checklist.

Results:

The literature search identified 15,864 articles. After assessment of titles, abstracts and full-texts, 89 articles were included. Most articles (84.3%) were derived from high-income countries and only 3 prospective articles were identified. Articles presented high methodological quality. In 38 articles (42.7%), at least one statistically significant association in the expected direction was reported (ie, safety from crime was positively associated with physical activity). Nine articles (10.1%) found an association in the unexpected direction and 42 (47.2%) did not find statistically significant associations. The results did not change when we analyzed articles separately by sex, age, type of measurement, or domains of physical activity evaluated.

Conclusions:

The current evidence, mostly based on cross-sectional studies, suggests a lack of association between physical activity and safety from crime. Prospective studies and natural experiments are needed, particularly in areas with wide crime variability.

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Rodrigo S. Reis, Adriano Akira F. Hino, Danielle K. Cruz, Lourival Espiridião da Silva Filho, Deborah C. Malta, Marlos R. Domingues and Pedro C. Hallal

Background:

The purpose of this study was to evaluate associations between exposure to the Exercise Orientation Service (EOS) program and physical activity (PA) and quality of life (QoL) in adults from Vitoria, Brazil.

Methods:

A phone survey was conducted with 2023 randomly selected participants (≥ 18 years) to measure awareness about the program, participation in the program, PA levels, and QoL. The associations were tested using Poisson and Linear regression models.

Results:

31.5% reported awareness about the program, 1.5% reported current participation, and 5.8% reported previous participation. Participation was higher among women (2.1%), older subjects (2.8%), and those reporting morbidities (2.4%). Awareness was higher among middle-aged persons (36.0%) and highly educated participants (37.1%). Current participation (PR = 2.22; 95% CI = 1.65–2.99) and awareness (PR = 1.15; 95% CI = 1.02–1.30) were associated with leisure-time PA (LTPA).

Conclusion:

Exposure to the program was not associated with QoL but was consistently associated with sufficient levels of LTPA among adults from Vitoria, Brazil.

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Michael Pratt, Ross C. Brownson, Luiz Roberto Ramos, Deborah Carvalho Malta, Pedro C. Hallal, Rodrigo S. Reis, Diana C. Parra and Eduardo J. Simões