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Walkability and Fitness Center Prices, Opening Hours, and Extra Services: The Case of Madrid, Spain

Faculty of Sports Sciences, Universidad Europea de Madrid, Calle Tajo S/N, Villaviciosa de Odón, 28670 Madrid, Spain
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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(15), 5622; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17155622
Received: 9 July 2020 / Revised: 30 July 2020 / Accepted: 3 August 2020 / Published: 4 August 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Health)
Walkability has been associated with urban development and political plans, contributing to more connected cities with improvements in communication, shopping, and pedestrian base. Among these services, fitness centers are becoming important elements for communities due to their impact on the health and welfare of citizens. The present study aims to examine how an area’s Walk Score® affects fitness center services, specifically membership costs, opening hours, and aquatic services. Data from 193 fitness centers were retrieved, representing all the areas of the municipality of Madrid, Spain, including fitness centers in the 21 city districts. A nonlinear relationship between an area’s Walk Score® and fitness centers’ monthly fees is observed. Only in premium fitness centers, a weak curvilinear model is observed, following a quadratic equation, showing that fitness centers with higher prices are in less walkable areas. Additionally, the association between Walk Score® and a fitness center’s opening hours reveals that fitness centers with wider hours of operation tend to be in moderately to highly walkable locations. Lastly, the existence of a swimming pool is related to a lower Walk Score®. Thus, fitness centers in less walkable areas try to offer additional services as differentiation from competitors, whereas centers in walkable locations use this advantage as a strength. View Full-Text
Keywords: walkability; fitness centers; services; urban environment walkability; fitness centers; services; urban environment
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León-Quismondo, J.; Bonal, J.; Burillo, P.; Fernández-Luna, Á. Walkability and Fitness Center Prices, Opening Hours, and Extra Services: The Case of Madrid, Spain. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 5622.

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