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Open AccessArticle

Parental Perceptions of the Social Environment Are Inversely Related to Constraint of Adolescents’ Neighborhood Physical Activity

1
Contextual Risk Factors Laboratory, Pennington Biomedical Research Center, 6400 Perkins Avenue, Baton Rouge, LA 70808, USA
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Behavioral & Community Health Sciences Department, School of Public Health, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans, LA 70112, USA
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Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans, LA 70112, USA
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Stanley S. Scott Cancer Center, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans, LA 70112, USA
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Department of Pediatrics, School of Medicine, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans, LA 70112, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Katherine P. Theall and Carolyn C. Johnson
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13(12), 1266; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph13121266
Received: 7 November 2016 / Revised: 12 December 2016 / Accepted: 14 December 2016 / Published: 21 December 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental Influences on Maternal and Child Health)
Background: The current study examined relationships between the neighborhood social environment (parental perceived collective efficacy (PCE)), constrained behaviors (e.g., avoidance or defensive behaviors) and adolescent offspring neighborhood physical activity in low- versus high-incivility neighborhoods. Methods: Adolescents (n = 71; 11–18 years (14.2, SD ± 1.6); male = 37 (52%); non-white = 24 (33.8%); low-income = 20 (29%); overweight/obese = 40 (56%)) and their parents/guardians enrolled in the Molecular and Social Determinants of Obesity in Developing Youth study were included in the current study. Questionnaires measured parents’/guardians’ PCE, constrained outdoor play practices and offspring neighborhood physical activity. Systematic social observation performed at the parcel-level using Google Street View assessed neighborhood incivilities. t-tests and chi-square tests determined differences by incivilities. Multilevel regression models examined relationships between PCE and: (1) constrained behaviors; and (2) neighborhood physical activity. The Hayes (2013) macro determined the mediating role of constrained behaviors. Results: Parents who had higher PCE reported lower levels of avoidance (p = 0.04) and defensive (p = 0.05) behaviors. However, demographic variables (i.e., gender, race and annual household income) limited these results. The direct relationship between PCE and parent-reported neighborhood physical activity was statistically significant in high-incivility neighborhoods only. Neither avoidance nor defensive behavior mediated the relationship between PCE and neighborhood physical activity. Conclusions: PCE influences parenting behaviors related to youth physical activity. Community-based programs that seek to facilitate social cohesion and control may be needed to increase adolescents’ physical activity. View Full-Text
Keywords: social environment; adolescent outdoor play; parenting behaviors; physical activity social environment; adolescent outdoor play; parenting behaviors; physical activity
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MDPI and ACS Style

Kepper, M.; Broyles, S.; Scribner, R.; Tseng, T.-S.; Zabaleta, J.; Griffiths, L.; Sothern, M. Parental Perceptions of the Social Environment Are Inversely Related to Constraint of Adolescents’ Neighborhood Physical Activity. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13, 1266.

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