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Open AccessArticle

Interactions with Home and Health Environments Discourage Physical Activity: Reports from Children with Complex Congenital Heart Disease and Their Parents

1
Labatt Family Heart Centre, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, ON M5G 1X8, Canada
2
Child Health Evaluative Sciences, The Hospital for Sick Children and Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON M5G 1X8, Canada
3
Department of Paediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON M5G 1X8, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Paul B. Tchounwou
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(9), 4903; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18094903
Received: 28 March 2021 / Revised: 29 April 2021 / Accepted: 30 April 2021 / Published: 4 May 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health, Physical Activity and Performance in Youth)
Children with complex congenital heart disease are less active than recommended for optimal health, with social and physical environments important determinants. The purpose of this study was to examine the physical activity perceptions of children with complex congenital heart disease and their parents to identify social and physical environment intervention targets. A semi-structured discussion guide elicited physical activity perceptions from children (26 boys, 19 girls, 6.0–12.4 years) with complex congenital heart disease (single ventricle n = 42) and their parents during three child and three parent focus groups and 41 interviews. Interviews and focus groups were audio-recorded and transcribed verbatim for inductive thematic analysis. Children and parents identified home, peer and health environments as impacting on their children’s physical activity participation. Peer environments, such as school or daycare, were supportive by providing physical activity facilities and enabling fun with peers and time outdoors. At home, parent and sibling interactions both encouraged and discouraged physical activity. The children’s unique health environment fostered physical activity uncertainty, discouraging activity despite minimal or no physician recommendations to restrict physical activity. Children with complex congenital heart disease and their parents recognize the importance of physical activity and fun with friends. Physical activity uncertainty contributes to their inactive lifestyles despite minimal restrictions from health professionals. Positive clinical encouragement and health environment interventions that better support physical activity are required. View Full-Text
Keywords: inactive; congenital heart disease environment; school environment; parent environment; peer environment; children with complex congenital heart disease inactive; congenital heart disease environment; school environment; parent environment; peer environment; children with complex congenital heart disease
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MDPI and ACS Style

Longmuir, P.E.; Corey, M.; McCrindle, B.W. Interactions with Home and Health Environments Discourage Physical Activity: Reports from Children with Complex Congenital Heart Disease and Their Parents. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 4903. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18094903

AMA Style

Longmuir PE, Corey M, McCrindle BW. Interactions with Home and Health Environments Discourage Physical Activity: Reports from Children with Complex Congenital Heart Disease and Their Parents. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(9):4903. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18094903

Chicago/Turabian Style

Longmuir, Patricia E.; Corey, Mary; McCrindle, Brian W. 2021. "Interactions with Home and Health Environments Discourage Physical Activity: Reports from Children with Complex Congenital Heart Disease and Their Parents" Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 18, no. 9: 4903. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18094903

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