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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13(12), 1179; doi:10.3390/ijerph13121179

Older Adults’ Outdoor Walking: Inequalities in Neighbourhood Safety, Pedestrian Infrastructure and Aesthetics

1
Faculty of Geo-Information Science and Earth Observation (ITC), University of Twente, PO Box 217, 7500 AE Enschede, The Netherlands
2
School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Marcia G. Ory
Received: 27 July 2016 / Revised: 8 November 2016 / Accepted: 21 November 2016 / Published: 25 November 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aging and Health Promotion)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [2675 KB, uploaded 25 November 2016]   |  

Abstract

Older adults living in high-deprivation areas walk less than those living in low-deprivation areas. Previous research has shown that older adults’ outdoor walking levels are related to the neighbourhood built environment. This study examines inequalities in perceived built environment attributes (i.e., safety, pedestrian infrastructure and aesthetics) and their possible influences on disparities in older adults’ outdoor walking levels in low- and high-deprivation areas of Birmingham, United Kingdom. It applied a mixed-method approach, included 173 participants (65 years and over), used GPS technology to measure outdoor walking levels, used questionnaires (for all participants) and conducted walking interviews (with a sub-sample) to collect data on perceived neighbourhood built environment attributes. The results show inequalities in perceived neighbourhood safety, pedestrian infrastructure and aesthetics in high- versus low-deprivation areas and demonstrate that they may influence disparities in participants’ outdoor walking levels. Improvements of perceived neighbourhood safety, pedestrian infrastructure and aesthetic in high-deprivation areas are encouraged. View Full-Text
Keywords: physical activity; walking; deprivation; built environment; older adults; perception; inequalities; GPS physical activity; walking; deprivation; built environment; older adults; perception; inequalities; GPS
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Zandieh, R.; Martinez, J.; Flacke, J.; Jones, P.; van Maarseveen, M. Older Adults’ Outdoor Walking: Inequalities in Neighbourhood Safety, Pedestrian Infrastructure and Aesthetics. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13, 1179.

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