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David L. Porretta, Francis M. Kozub and Fabio L. Lisboa

Articles related to adapted physical activity appearing in professional journals (1984-1998) were analyzed. Of the 111 articles reviewed, 30 (27%), 39 (35%), and 42 (38%) were published during the 1984-1988, 1989-1993, and 1994-1998 time periods, respectively. Two thirds of the studies concerned conditions/demographics/practices rather than attitudes. Only 34 (31%) surveys were mailed as opposed to other forms of delivery (e.g., face to face interviews, telephone, etc.). While validity and reliability reporting increased over the three time periods, in total, only 59 (53%) reported validity and 62 (56%) reported reliability. A sample frame was clearly identified in only 43 (39%) studies. Only 7 (6%) articles addressed nonresponse bias, a critical element in survey research design. Future investigators need to report validity and reliability, clearly define sample frames, and account for nonresponse bias.

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Samuel Todd, Marshall Magnusen, Tony Lachowetz and Amy Jones

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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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Anna E. Mathews, Natalie Colabianchi, Brent Hutto, Delores M. Pluto and Steve P. Hooker

Background:

The objectives of this study were to assess (1) pedestrian activity levels among adults, (2) where and why adults engage in pedestrian activity, and (3) what adults consider when deciding where to engage in pedestrian activity.

Methods:

Pedestrian activity was assessed in 12,036 California adults, ≥18 years, using a random digit-dial telephone survey.

Results:

Significant differences were identified by race, sex, age, and physical activity level in the type, location, and purpose of pedestrian activities. Men engage in pedestrian activity at work, and women engage in pedestrian activity while escorting children to school and running errands. Whites primarily engage in leisure-time pedestrian activity, and non-whites are more likely to engage in pedestrian activity for transportation. Older adults were less active than their younger counterparts.

Conclusions:

These findings should be considered by public health agencies and their partners as they continue to increase and promote opportunities for pedestrian activity. Additional research is needed to assess older adults’ physical activity patterns and preferences, barriers, and facilitators to effectively tailor physical activity promotion efforts to this at-risk group.

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Alex Antonio Florindo, Vanessa Valente Guimarães, Chester Luiz Galvão Cesar, Marilisa Berti de Azevedo Barros, Maria Cecília Goi Porto Alves and Moisés Goldbaum

Background:

To estimate the prevalence of and identify factors associated with physical activity in leisure, transportation, occupational, and household settings.

Methods:

This was a cross-sectional study aimed at investigating living and health conditions among the population of São Paulo, Brazil. Data on 1318 adults aged 18 to 65 years were used. To assess physical activity, the long version of the International Physical Activity Questionnaire was applied. Multivariate analysis was conducted using a hierarchical model.

Results:

The greatest prevalence of insufficient activity related to transportation (91.7%), followed by leisure (77.5%), occupational (68.9%), and household settings (56.7%). The variables associated with insufficient levels of physical activity in leisure were female sex, older age, low education level, nonwhite skin color, smoking, and self-reported poor health; in occupational settings were female sex, white skin color, high education level, self-reported poor health, nonsmoking, and obesity; in transportation settings were female sex; and in household settings, with male sex, separated, or widowed status and high education level.

Conclusion:

Physical activity in transportation and leisure settings should be encouraged. This study will serve as a reference point in monitoring different types of physical activities and implementing public physical activity policies in developing countries.

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Genevieve Fridlund Dunton, Donna Spruijt-Metz, Jennifer Wolch, Chih-Ping Chou, Michael Jerrett, Jason Byrne, Susan Weaver and Kim D. Reynolds

Background:

Efforts to increase community levels of physical activity through the development of multiuse urban trails could be strengthened by information about factors predicting trail use. This study examined whether reasons for trail use predict levels of physical activity on urban trails.

Methods:

Adults (N = 335) living within a 1-mile buffer zone of urban trails in Chicago, Dallas, and Los Angeles completed a self-report measure assessing demographics, reason for trail use, and physical activity on the trail. Accelerometers measured total daily moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA). Environmental features of the urban trail were assessed with the Systematic Pedestrian and Cyclist Environmental Scan for trails measure. Multivariate regression analyses were conducted that accounted for clustering of individuals within trail segments.

Results:

After controlling for demographic and environmental factors and total daily MVPA, reasons for trail use significantly predicted recreational but not transportation activity. Recreational trail activity was greater for participants who reported exercise and health reasons for trail use as compared with other reasons (ie, social interaction, enjoying nature, walking pets) for recreational trail use.

Conclusions:

To increase the use of urban trails, it may be useful to promote the health and exercise benefits of recreational trail use.

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Susan A. Carlson, Roxanna Guide, Thomas L. Schmid, Latetia V. Moore, Danielle T. Barradas and Janet E. Fulton

Background:

Street-scale urban design policies are recommended to increase physical activity in communities. Our purpose was to examine U.S. public support for local street-scale urban design features and policies.

Methods:

Analysis is based on a cross-sectional national sample of adults (n = 4682) participating in the 2006 HealthStyles mail survey.

Results:

About 57% of adults rated local street-scale urban design as highly important in determining the amount of physical activity they obtain. Adjusted odds of rating neighborhood features as having high importance were higher in people aged ≥65 years versus those <65 and minority racial/ethnic groups versus non-Hispanic whites. Two-thirds of adults were willing to take civic action to support local street-scale urban design policy. Adjusted odds of being willing to take any action versus none was higher in non-Hispanic blacks and Hispanics versus non-Hispanic whites, was higher in those with household incomes ≥$60,000 versus ≤$15,000 per year, and increased as education and perceived importance of neighborhood features increased.

Conclusions:

There are high levels of public support for local street-scale urban design policies; however, demographic differences exist in the level of support. These differences are important considerations for policymakers and for those designing community programs targeting street-scale urban design features and policies.

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Kathleen B. Watson, Susan A. Carlson, Tiffany Humbert-Rico, Dianna D. Carroll and Janet E. Fulton

Background:

Less than one-third of U.S. adults walk for transportation. Public health strategies to increase transportation walking would benefit from knowing what adults think is a reasonable distance to walk. Our purpose was to determine 1) what adults think is a reasonable distance and amount of time to walk and 2) whether there were differences in minutes spent transportation walking by what adults think is reasonable.

Methods:

Analyses used a cross-sectional nationwide adult sample (n = 3653) participating in the 2010 Summer ConsumerStyles mail survey.

Results:

Most adults (> 90%) think transportation walking is reasonable. However, less than half (43%) think walking a mile or more or for 20 minutes or more is reasonable. What adults think is reasonable is similar across most demographic subgroups, except for older adults (≥ 65 years) who think shorter distances and times are reasonable. Trend analysis that adjust for demographic characteristics indicates adults who think longer distances and times are reasonable walk more.

Conclusions:

Walking for short distances is acceptable to most U.S. adults. Public health programs designed to encourage longer distance trips may wish to improve supports for transportation walking to make walking longer distances seem easier and more acceptable to most U.S. adults.

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Helene Buch Pedersen, Morten Helmer-Nielsen, Karin Brochstedt Dieperink and Birte Østergaard

Background:

Exercise on prescription (EOP) is an attempt to increase physical activity among sedentary adults with signs of lifestyle diseases. Until now, no studies have focused on patients with chronic diseases and how they assess the long-term effect of participating in EOP consisting of supervised interventions of different intensities. This study aimed to describe and compare self-reported physical activity in the long term among participants in 3 EOP modules of different intensities.

Methods:

A cross-sectional survey was conducted among 1152 former participants in EOP between July 2005 and May 2007 in 2 Danish counties. Physical activity was measured as number of days with a minimum 30 minutes of moderate/vigorous activity.

Results:

Seventy-five percent (n = 854) returned the questionnaire. Of these, 36% reported being physically active ≥ 5 days/week. Comparing leisure-time activities before EOP 29% was sedentary vs. 15% (P < 0 .01) after, moderate + hard leisure-time activities was 7% before vs. 19% after EOP (P < 0 .01). Time postintervention did not influence the numbers reporting to be physical active negatively.

Conclusions:

This study in community-dwelling adults with chronic diseases participating in EOP finds that approximately one-third reported being physically active in the long term postintervention, but no differences between the modalities were found.

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Ginny M. Frederick, Prabasaj Paul, Kathleen Bachtel Watson, Joan M. Dorn and Janet Fulton

Background:

Point-of-decision prompts may be appropriate to promote walking, instead of using a mechanized mode of transport, such as a train, in airports. To our knowledge, no current studies describe the development of messages for prompts in this setting.

Methods:

In-person interviews were conducted with 150 randomly selected airport travelers who rode the train to their departure gate. Travelers reported various reasons for riding the train to their gate. They were asked about messages that would encourage them to walk. Exploratory factor analysis was conducted for reasons for riding the train. Confirmatory factor analysis was conducted for messages to encourage walking to the departure gate.

Results:

Travelers reported not knowing walking was an option (23.8%), seeing others riding the train (14.4%), and being afraid of getting lost (9.2%) as reasons for riding the train. Many indicated that directional signs and prompts promoting walking as exercise would encourage them to walk instead of riding the train.

Conclusions:

Some reasons for riding the train in an airport may be modifiable by installing point-ofdecision prompts. Providing directional signs to travelers may prompt them to walk to their gate instead of riding the train. Similar prompts may also be considered in other community settings.