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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13(3), 287; doi:10.3390/ijerph13030287

Sports Facilities, Shopping Centers or Homes: What Locations are Important for Adults’ Physical Activity? A Cross-Sectional Study

Department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning, Faculty of Geosciences, Utrecht University, Heidelberglaan 2, Utrecht 3584 CS, The Netherlands
Department of Urban Environment and Safety, Nederlandse Organisatie voor Toegepast Natuurwetenschappelijk Onderzoek/Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO), P.O. Box 80015, Utrecht 3508 TA, The Netherlands
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Harry Timmermans, Astrid Kemperman and Pauline van den Berg
Received: 14 January 2016 / Revised: 24 February 2016 / Accepted: 1 March 2016 / Published: 4 March 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Impacts of the Built Environment on Public Health)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [803 KB, uploaded 4 March 2016]   |  


Physical activity (PA) is influenced by the built environment. However, little is known about the types of built environment where adults spend their time, and at what levels of PA they engage in those environments. Understanding the effect of the built environment on PA requires insight into PA behavior at different types of locations (e.g., home, work, shopping centers, and sports facilities). Therefore, this study describes where adults aged 45–65 years were active with moderate-to-vigorous intensity (MVPA), and examines associations of socio-demographic factors and neighborhood with MVPA at these locations. Participants’ (N = 308) PA was measured for seven days using accelerometers and GPS-devices. Adults spent most minutes of MVPA at home and work. Highest MVPA-ratios of total time spent at a location were achieved in sports facilities and during transport. Neighborhood characteristics and socio-demographic factors such as work status, health status and household structure, had significant effects on MVPA at various locations and on total MVPA. Understanding PA behavior at various locations may provide insights that allow professionals in different domains (e.g., health, landscaping, urban planning) to develop strategies to stimulate PA. View Full-Text
Keywords: physical activity; global positioning system (GPS); accelerometer; activity locations physical activity; global positioning system (GPS); accelerometer; activity locations

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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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Jansen, M.; Ettema, D.; Pierik, F.; Dijst, M. Sports Facilities, Shopping Centers or Homes: What Locations are Important for Adults’ Physical Activity? A Cross-Sectional Study. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13, 287.

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