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Environmental Factors Associated with Older Adult’s Walking Behaviors: A Systematic Review of Quantitative Studies

Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore, Singapore 119260, Singapore
Sustainability 2019, 11(12), 3253; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11123253
Received: 29 April 2019 / Revised: 29 May 2019 / Accepted: 5 June 2019 / Published: 12 June 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue A Healthy Built Environment for an Ageing Population)
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Abstract

The aim of this study is to systematically review the relationship between neighborhood environments and all types of walking behaviors among older adults. Seventy peer-reviewed journal articles which met the selection criteria were examined. Research designs were summarized by geographical location and the associations of environmental characteristics and walking were calculated. Interactions between moderators and environmental characteristics for all types of walking were also categorized. Results have shown that transport walking is the most supported by neighborhood environmental characteristics. The positively related environmental characteristics are walkability, urbanization, land use mix-diversity and accessibility, walking amenities, and bicycle lanes. Total walking was positively associated with walkability and urbanization. Recreational walking was associated with neighborhood employment/income level, nearness to public transport/bus stops, and social cohesion. The most commonly used moderators were age and gender, but inconsistent moderating effects between neighborhood environments and walking were also found. In densely populated environments such as Hong Kong, older adults walked mostly for both transport and recreation. In contrast, American older adults in low density areas walked less for transport and more for recreation. Findings support a strong relationship between neighborhood environments and older adults’ walking. Future research should focus on longitudinal studies and comparison studies by geographic location. View Full-Text
Keywords: neighborhood environment; older adults; total walking; walking for transport; walking for recreation; moderator; systematic review neighborhood environment; older adults; total walking; walking for transport; walking for recreation; moderator; systematic review
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Yun, H.Y. Environmental Factors Associated with Older Adult’s Walking Behaviors: A Systematic Review of Quantitative Studies. Sustainability 2019, 11, 3253.

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