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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13(4), 412; doi:10.3390/ijerph13040412

Cross Sectional Association between Spatially Measured Walking Bouts and Neighborhood Walkability

1
Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Nutritional Sciences, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195, USA
2
Department of Urban Design and Planning, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195, USA
3
Nutrition & Exercise Physiology Program, Washington State University, Spokane, WA 99210, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Harry Timmermans
Received: 15 February 2016 / Revised: 23 March 2016 / Accepted: 5 April 2016 / Published: 8 April 2016
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Abstract

Walking is the most popular choice of aerobic physical activity to improve health among U.S. adults. Physical characteristics of the home neighborhood can facilitate or hinder walking. The purpose of this study was to quantify neighborhood walking, using objective methods and to examine the association between counts of walking bouts in the home neighborhood and neighborhood walkability. This was a cross-sectional study of 106 adults who wore accelerometers and GPS devices for two weeks. Walking was quantified within 1, 2, and 3 km Euclidean (straight-line) and network buffers around the geocoded home location. Walkability was estimated using a commercially available index. Walking bout counts increased with buffer size and were associated with walkability, regardless of buffer type or size (p < 0.001). Quantification of walking bouts within (and outside) of pre-defined neighborhood buffers of different sizes and types allowed for the specification of walking locations to better describe and elucidate walking behaviors. These data support the concept that neighborhood characteristics can influence walking among adults. View Full-Text
Keywords: Geographic Information Systems; residence characteristics; twins; walking Geographic Information Systems; residence characteristics; twins; walking
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

Hwang, L.-D.; Hurvitz, P.M.; Duncan, G.E. Cross Sectional Association between Spatially Measured Walking Bouts and Neighborhood Walkability. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13, 412.

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