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Topical Collection "Physical Activity and Public Health"

Editor

Collection Editor
Assoc. Prof. James Dollman

Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity (ARENA), School of Health Sciences, University of South Australia, GPO Box 2471, Adelaide SA 5000, Australia
Website | E-Mail
Interests: physical activity; exercise; cardiovascular health; rural health; health promotion; socioeconomic; health determinants

Topical Collection Information

Dear Colleagues,

We are organizing a Topic Collection on Physical Activity and Public Health in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. The venue is a peer-reviewed scientific journal that publishes articles and communications in the interdisciplinary area of environmental health sciences and public health. For detailed information on the journal, we refer you to https://www.mdpi.com/journal/ijerph.

There is compelling evidence for the importance of regular physical activity in attaining and maintaining a wide range of health outcomes across the lifespan. Active lifestyles are important for disease prevention as well as disease management and rehabilitation. Accordingly, understanding the associations of physical activity with health, as well the psychological, social, and environmental factors that shape physical activity behaviours, are urgent public health priorities. To advance our understanding and consequently develop more effective physical activity promotion, researchers in this field are continually seeking to develop improved methods of measuring physical activity and analysing raw data.

This Collection welcomes contributions across the broad field of physical activity and public health, including (but not limited to) the following topics:

  • Determinants/correlates of physical activity, as a global measure or in specific contexts such as leisure, occupation, active transport, organized sport.
  • Physical activity and disease prevention
  • Physical activity outcomes in clinical populations, including, for example, cancer survivorship and cardiac rehabilitation
  • Physical activity and mental health
  • Physical activity and cognition
  • Physical activity in ageing populations
  • Physical activity and educational attainment in children
  • Physical activity measurement: challenges and recent advances
  • Physical activity prescription for health

We will welcome contributions that: focus on children or adults; report quantitative or qualitative studies; and use cross-sectional, experimental, or cohort designs.

Assoc. Prof. Jim Dollman
Collection Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the collection website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Physical activity
  • Public health
  • Adults
  • Older adults
  • Children
  • Mental health
  • Cognition
  • Correlates
  • Determinants
  • Leisure
  • Active transport
  • Sport
  • Rehabilitation
  • Measurement
  • Exercise

Published Papers (34 papers)

2019

Jump to: 2018

Open AccessArticle
Do Differences in Social Environments Explain Gender Differences in Recreational Walking across Neighbourhoods?
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(11), 1980; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16111980
Received: 5 April 2019 / Revised: 17 May 2019 / Accepted: 28 May 2019 / Published: 4 June 2019
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Abstract
Within a city, gender differences in walking for recreation (WfR) vary significantly across neighbourhoods, although the reasons remain unknown. This cross-sectional study investigated the contribution of the social environment (SE) to explaining such variation, using 2009 data from the How Areas in Brisbane [...] Read more.
Within a city, gender differences in walking for recreation (WfR) vary significantly across neighbourhoods, although the reasons remain unknown. This cross-sectional study investigated the contribution of the social environment (SE) to explaining such variation, using 2009 data from the How Areas in Brisbane Influence healTh and AcTivity (HABITAT) study, including 7866 residents aged 42–67 years within 200 neighbourhoods in Brisbane, Australia (72.6% response rate). The analytical sample comprised 200 neighbourhoods and 6643 participants (mean 33 per neighbourhood, range 8–99, 95% CI 30.6–35.8). Self-reported weekly minutes of WfR were categorised into 0 and 1–840 mins. The SE was conceptualised through neighbourhood-level perceptions of social cohesion, incivilities and safety from crime. Analyses included multilevel binomial logistic regression with gender as main predictor, adjusting for age, socioeconomic position, residential self-selection and neighbourhood disadvantage. On average, women walked more for recreation than men prior to adjustment for covariates. Gender differences in WfR varied significantly across neighbourhoods, and the magnitude of the variation for women was twice that of men. The SE did not explain neighbourhood differences in the gender–WfR relationship, nor the between-neighbourhood variation in WfR for men or women. Neighbourhood-level factors seem to influence the WfR of men and women differently, with women being more sensitive to their environment, although Brisbane’s SE did not seem such a factor. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Validation of the Block Walk Method for Assessing Physical Activity occurring on Sidewalks/Streets
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(11), 1927; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16111927
Received: 10 April 2019 / Revised: 9 May 2019 / Accepted: 28 May 2019 / Published: 31 May 2019
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Abstract
The block walk method (BWM) is one of the more common approaches for assessing physical activity (PA) performed on sidewalks/streets; however, it is non-technical, labor-intensive, and lacks validation. This study aimed to validate the BWM and examine the potential for using a wearable [...] Read more.
The block walk method (BWM) is one of the more common approaches for assessing physical activity (PA) performed on sidewalks/streets; however, it is non-technical, labor-intensive, and lacks validation. This study aimed to validate the BWM and examine the potential for using a wearable video device (WVD) to assess PA occurring on sidewalks/streets. Trained observers (one wearing and one not wearing the WVD) walked together and performed the BWM according to a previously developed protocol along routes in low, medium, and high walkable areas. Two experts then reviewed the videos. A total of 1150 (traditional) and 1087 (video review) individuals were observed during 900 min of observation. When larger numbers of individuals were observed, the traditional method overestimated the overall number of people as well as those walking and sitting/standing, while underestimating the number of runners. Valid estimates of PA occurring on sidewalks/streets can be obtained by the traditional BWM in low and medium walkability areas and/or with non-common activities (cycling); however, its validity is questionable when sidewalks/streets use volume is high. The use of WVDs in PA assessment has the potential to establish new levels of accuracy, reduce resource requirements, and open up the possibility for retrospective analysis. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Socio-Ecological Natural Experiment with Randomized Controlled Trial to Promote Active Commuting to Work: Process Evaluation, Behavioral Impacts, and Changes in the Use and Quality of Walking and Cycling Paths
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(9), 1661; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16091661
Received: 23 April 2019 / Revised: 8 May 2019 / Accepted: 9 May 2019 / Published: 13 May 2019
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Abstract
Active commuting to work (ACW) has beneficial effects on health, traffic, and climate. However, more robust evidence is needed on how to promote ACW. This paper reports the findings of a multilevel natural experiment with a randomized controlled trial in 16 Finnish workplaces. [...] Read more.
Active commuting to work (ACW) has beneficial effects on health, traffic, and climate. However, more robust evidence is needed on how to promote ACW. This paper reports the findings of a multilevel natural experiment with a randomized controlled trial in 16 Finnish workplaces. In Phase 1, 11 workplaces (1823 employees) from Area 1 were exposed to environmental improvements in walking and cycling paths. In Phase 2, five more workplaces (826 employees) were recruited from Area 2 and all workplaces were randomized into experimental group (EXP) promoting ACW with social and behavioral strategies and comparison group (COM) participating only in data collection. Process and impact evaluation with questionnaires, travel diaries, accelerometers, traffic calculations, and auditing were conducted. Statistics included Wilcoxon Signed Ranks Test, Mann-Whitney U-test, and after-before differences with 95% confidence intervals (95% CI). After Phase 1, positive change was seen in the self-reported number of days, which the employees intended to cycle part of their journey to work in the following week (p = 0.001). After Phase 2, intervention effect was observed in the proportion of employees, who reported willingness to increase walking (8.7%; 95% CI 1.8 to 15.6) and cycling (5.5%; 2.2 to 8.8) and opportunity to cycle part of their journey to work (5.9%; 2.1 to 9.7). To conclude, the intervention facilitated employees’ motivation for ACW, which is the first step towards behavior change. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Cardiorespiratory Fitness without Exercise Testing Can Predict All-Cause Mortality Risk in a Representative Sample of Korean Older Adults
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(9), 1633; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16091633
Received: 16 April 2019 / Revised: 1 May 2019 / Accepted: 9 May 2019 / Published: 10 May 2019
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Abstract
This study examined the association between cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) without exercise testing and all-cause mortality in Korean older adults. The present study was carried out using data from the 2008 and 2011 Living Profiles of Older People Survey. A total of 14,122 participants [...] Read more.
This study examined the association between cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) without exercise testing and all-cause mortality in Korean older adults. The present study was carried out using data from the 2008 and 2011 Living Profiles of Older People Survey. A total of 14,122 participants aged 60 years and older (57% women) completed the 2008 baseline and 2011 follow-up assessments (i.e., socioeconomic status, health behaviors and conditions, and prevalence of chronic diseases), and they were included for the final analyses. CRF was estimated (eCRF) with sex-specific algorithms and classified as lower (lowest 25%), middle (middle 50%), and upper (highest 25%). Cox proportional hazards regression was used to calculate hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) across eCRF categories. In total, multivariable-adjusted HRs and 95% CIs were 1 for the upper eCRF group (referent), 1.059 (0.814~1.378) for the middle eCRF group, and 1.714 (1.304~2.253) for the lower eCRF group. In men, multivariable-adjusted HRs and 95% CIs were 1 for the upper eCRF group (referent), 1.011 (0.716~1.427) for the middle eCRF group, and 1.566 (1.098~2.234) for the lower eCRF group. In women, multivariable-adjusted HRs and 95% CIs were 1 for the upper eCRF group (referent), 1.064 (0.707~1.602) for the middle eCRF group, and 1.599 (1.032~2.478) for the lower eCRF group. The current findings suggest that eCRF may have an independent predictor of all-cause mortality, underscoring the importance of promoting physical activity to maintain a healthful level of CRF in Korean geriatric population. Full article
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Open AccessReview
The Effects of Green Exercise on Physical and Mental Wellbeing: A Systematic Review
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(8), 1352; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16081352
Received: 19 March 2019 / Revised: 3 April 2019 / Accepted: 12 April 2019 / Published: 15 April 2019
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Abstract
We aimed to examine the evidence for the proposed additive effect of exercise in the presence of nature (green exercise) by systematically reviewing studies that investigated the effects of outdoor or virtual green exercise compared with indoor exercise. Our review updates an earlier [...] Read more.
We aimed to examine the evidence for the proposed additive effect of exercise in the presence of nature (green exercise) by systematically reviewing studies that investigated the effects of outdoor or virtual green exercise compared with indoor exercise. Our review updates an earlier review, whose searches were conducted in April 2010. Trials were eligible if: (a) participants in an outdoor or virtual exercise condition were exposed to views of nature (green exercise); (b) green exercise was compared with indoor exercise with no exposure to nature; (c) included an outcome related to physical or mental health; (d) used comparative or crossover trial design. We searched the following databases from 1st January 2010 to 28th June 2018: PubMed, CENTRAL, EMBASE, PsycINFO, GreenFile, and Sports DISCUS. We assessed risk of bias using the Cochrane “risk of bias” tool. Where possible we conducted a meta-analysis using the inverse variance random-effects method, and where this approach was not possible we presented the results qualitatively and in harvest plots. We identified 28 eligible trials. In a meta-analysis of just three longitudinal trials, the only statistical finding was slightly lower post-intervention perceived exertion with green versus indoor exercise (mean difference: −1.02; 95% confidence intervals: −1.88, −0.16). Compared with indoor exercise, acute bouts of outdoor green exercise may favorably influence affective valence and enjoyment, but not emotion, perceived exertion, exercise intensity, and biological markers. No other consistent statistical differences were observed, apart from a higher enjoyment of outdoor green versus virtual green exercise. We found a high risk of bias across trials and an overall low quality of evidence. In conclusion, there was limited evidence to support the view that green exercise offers superior benefits to exercise without exposure to nature. The low quality of evidence prohibits clear interpretation of trial findings. Future robust and rigorously designed trials are needed to evaluate the effects of long-term and multiple-bout exposure to nature during exercise compared with exercise indoors. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Smartphone Use and Physical Activity among College Students in Health Science-Related Majors in the United States and Thailand
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(8), 1315; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16081315
Received: 18 January 2019 / Revised: 3 April 2019 / Accepted: 9 April 2019 / Published: 12 April 2019
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Abstract
Smartphone use among college students is prevalent across the world. Recently, research has begun to investigate the relationship between smartphone use and physical activity. This study examined the amount of time spent using a smartphone and the physical activity (PA) levels among college [...] Read more.
Smartphone use among college students is prevalent across the world. Recently, research has begun to investigate the relationship between smartphone use and physical activity. This study examined the amount of time spent using a smartphone and the physical activity (PA) levels among college students majoring in health science-related disciplines in the United States (US) and Thailand. Using convenience sampling, college students in the US (n = 242) and Thailand (n = 194) completed an online survey, in Fall 2016, assessing smartphone usage and PA. Data were analyzed using chi-square tests and two-way ANOVA (p < 0.05). US students reported more days per week ( U = 15,150.0 , p = 0.00 , r = 0.33 ) and greater duration of PA ( U = 11,234.0 , p = 0.00 , r = 0.33 ) than Thai students while Thai students used smartphones more per day than US students ( U = 13,137.5 , p = 0.00 , r = 0.40 ). No difference existed for years of smartphone use ( U = 22,207.0 , p = 0.27 ). Greater smartphone use per day inversely related to days per week of engaging in PA among Thai students ( X 2 ( 3 ) = 10.55 , p = 0.01 , ε 2 = 0.06 ), but not among US students ( X 2 ( 3 ) = 2.39 , p = 0.50 ). The high smartphone use among college students, especially in Thailand, may be a barrier to PA as well as a strategy for PA promotion in higher education settings. Research should examine the best techniques for smartphone application development to promote PA in college settings. Full article
Open AccessArticle
The Potential of Specialized Media in Public Health: Analysis of Health-Related Content in Sports Newspapers
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(7), 1202; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16071202
Received: 17 March 2019 / Accepted: 30 March 2019 / Published: 3 April 2019
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Abstract
Sports-specialized newspapers are one of the print media with the highest number of readers in Spain. However, little is known about the health coverage in this type of print press. The aim of the study was to analyze any health-related material in sports [...] Read more.
Sports-specialized newspapers are one of the print media with the highest number of readers in Spain. However, little is known about the health coverage in this type of print press. The aim of the study was to analyze any health-related material in sports newspaper coverage and describe the main characteristics. This is an observational and cross-sectional study, performed in relation to the three most read daily Spanish sports newspapers (MARCA, AS, SPORT). A descriptive analysis was conducted to assess the health-related materials selected after a careful search over a period of 30 days. During this time, a total of 815 units of analysis were identified. On average, 14.79% (n = 645 pages) of the full content (n = 4362) included health-related material. The Liga BBVA section was the most frequent to contain health-related content by a significant margin (p = 0.01). The main covered topics were injuries to soccer players (52%), doping (21%), and other diseases in athletes or their relatives (8.6%) with no significant differences (p = 0.10). Photographs (87.4%) were the most frequent visual material used in the health content, followed by infographics (12.6%). Press releases were the most frequent source of information (58%). Spanish sports newspapers include a high proportion of health-related material, especially in terms of providing detailed descriptions of athletes’ sport injuries, mainly related to soccer. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Experiences with Participation in a Supervised Group-Based Outdoor Cycling Programme for People with Mental Illness: A Focus Group Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(4), 528; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16040528
Received: 2 November 2018 / Revised: 1 February 2019 / Accepted: 9 February 2019 / Published: 13 February 2019
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Abstract
Epidemiological evidence suggests that physical exercise, notably popular sports, is associated with reduced, mental health burden. This study explored participation in a supervised, group-based, outdoor cycling programme (10 × 10 km rides over a five-month period) for people with mental illness. We conducted [...] Read more.
Epidemiological evidence suggests that physical exercise, notably popular sports, is associated with reduced, mental health burden. This study explored participation in a supervised, group-based, outdoor cycling programme (10 × 10 km rides over a five-month period) for people with mental illness. We conducted two rounds of three audio-taped focus groups with people with mental illness (n = 25, mean age = 40 years) that focused on previous physical activity and motivation for enrolment (baseline), and on programme evaluation, including subjective wellbeing (after 10 weeks). Transcribed verbatim, the group discussions were analysed using systematic text condensation, which identified 12 categories and four themes: 1) Reinvigoration, (2) motivation through equal status, (3) group commitment without focus on illness, and (4) the value of cycling. Of particular interest was the potential for outdoor cycling to support unique non-stigmatising therapeutic relationships in a non-patient environment, outdoor sensory experiences, e.g., fresh air, wind, and rain, and feelings of personal mastery, equal status, solidarity, community, and healing. This study indicated that outdoor cycling performed in groups supervised by healthcare staff may support exercise self-efficacy and empower people with mental illness, potentially promoting long-term physical activity and participation. Future interventional studies examining the effectiveness of outdoor cycling complementary to conventional community mental healthcare services are warranted. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Recognition of Barriers to Physical Activity Promotion in Immigrant Children in Spain: A Qualitative Case Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(3), 431; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16030431
Received: 7 December 2018 / Revised: 29 January 2019 / Accepted: 31 January 2019 / Published: 2 February 2019
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Abstract
Physical activity facilitates the acquisition of healthy habits from childhood to adulthood. Differences exist regarding the performance of physical activity among immigrant children compared to native Spanish children. The purpose of the study was to describe the barriers that exist for the promotion [...] Read more.
Physical activity facilitates the acquisition of healthy habits from childhood to adulthood. Differences exist regarding the performance of physical activity among immigrant children compared to native Spanish children. The purpose of the study was to describe the barriers that exist for the promotion of physical activity. A qualitative case-study approach was implemented. Parents of immigrant children, teachers, a school principal, and priests were included, using purposeful sampling. Data were collected from 25 participants, via unstructured and semi-structured interviews, focus groups, and researchers’ field notes. A thematic analysis was performed and ecological levels were identified. Our findings revealed the following barriers to performing physical activity: (a) the meaning of physical activity, (b) gender inequalities, (c) academic burden, (d) lack of social contact, (e) expenses and family economy, (f) lack of infrastructure and natural surroundings, (g) time constraints, (h) fear and insecurity, and (i) the reason for immigrating. These results may be used to revise the school curriculum, promoting equal opportunities for physical activity and encouraging family participation. Additionally, urban design policies should be encouraged to facilitate access to open spaces for recreation within cities. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Equity Impact Assessment of Interventions to Promote Physical Activity among Older Adults: A Logic Model Framework
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(3), 420; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16030420
Received: 18 December 2018 / Revised: 23 January 2019 / Accepted: 30 January 2019 / Published: 1 February 2019
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Abstract
Reducing social inequalities in health and health determinants, including physical activity (PA), is a major challenge for public health. PA-promoting interventions are increasingly implemented. Little is known, however, about the impact of these interventions on social inequalities. For prioritizing interventions most likely to [...] Read more.
Reducing social inequalities in health and health determinants, including physical activity (PA), is a major challenge for public health. PA-promoting interventions are increasingly implemented. Little is known, however, about the impact of these interventions on social inequalities. For prioritizing interventions most likely to be effective in reducing inequalities, studies of PA interventions need to conduct equity impact assessments. The aim of this article is to describe the development of a logic model framework for equity impact assessments of interventions to promote PA. The framework was developed within the prevention research network AEQUIPA—Physical activity and health equity: primary prevention for healthy ageing, informed by an equity-focused systematic review, expert interviews, exploratory literature searches, and joint discussions within the network. The framework comprises a general equity-focused logic model to be adapted to specific interventions. The intervention-specific equity-focused logic models illustrate the key elements relevant for assessing social inequalities in study participation, compliance with and acceptance of interventions, as well as the efficacy of interventions. Future work within AEQUIPA will reveal which key elements are most critical for the interventions’ equity impacts. Equity impact assessments are beneficial for prioritizing interventions most likely to be effective in reducing health inequalities. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
The Role of Anthropogenic Elements in the Environment for Affective States and Cortisol Concentration in Mountain Hiking—A Crossover Trial
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(2), 290; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16020290
Received: 6 December 2018 / Revised: 10 January 2019 / Accepted: 19 January 2019 / Published: 21 January 2019
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Abstract
Green exercise might have positive effects on health and affective states. Little is known about the ideal characteristics of the natural environment, where exercise is conducted in. Thus, the primary aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of anthropogenic elements [...] Read more.
Green exercise might have positive effects on health and affective states. Little is known about the ideal characteristics of the natural environment, where exercise is conducted in. Thus, the primary aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of anthropogenic elements on acute stress-related physiological responses and affective states in green exercise. Using a crossover field study design, 52 healthy participants were exposed to two different mountain hiking conditions: An environment with less anthropogenic elements and an environment with more anthropogenic elements. Pre and post conditions, affective states and salivary cortisol concentration were measured. Repeated measures ANOVAs were used to analyze if pre-post changes differed between the conditions. Pre-post changes in affective states and salivary cortisol concentration did not significantly differ, partial η² < 0.06. Positive affective states showed significantly higher values post compared to pre-condition, partial η² > 0.13. The present results indicate that anthropogenic elements have a minor role in the influence on affective states and salivary cortisol concentration during mountain hiking. It is concluded that a single bout of mountain hiking independent of anthropogenic elements in the environment is effective in influencing affective states positively. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Active School Transportation in Winter Conditions: Biking Together Is Warmer
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(2), 234; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16020234
Received: 23 November 2018 / Revised: 4 January 2019 / Accepted: 11 January 2019 / Published: 15 January 2019
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Abstract
There has been a decline in children’s use of active school transportation (AST) while there is also limited research concerning AST in winter conditions. This study aimed to explore the prerequisites and experiences of schoolchildren and parents participating in an empowerment- and gamification-inspired [...] Read more.
There has been a decline in children’s use of active school transportation (AST) while there is also limited research concerning AST in winter conditions. This study aimed to explore the prerequisites and experiences of schoolchildren and parents participating in an empowerment- and gamification-inspired intervention to promote students’ AST in winter conditions. Methods: Thirty-five students, who were aged 12–13 years, and 34 parents from the north of Sweden participated in the study. Data were collected using photovoice and open questions in a questionnaire and analyzed using qualitative content analysis. Results: The results show that involvement and togetherness motivated the students to use AST. In addition, during the project, the parents changed to have more positive attitudes towards their children’s use of AST. The students reported that using AST during wintertime is strenuous but rewarding and imparts a sense of pride. Conclusion: Interventions for increasing students’ AST in winter conditions should focus on the motivational aspects for both children and parents. For overcoming parental hesitation with regards to AST during winter, addressing their concerns and empowering the students are key factors. To increase the use of AST all year around, targeting the challenges perceived during the winter is especially beneficial. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Action 3:30R: Results of a Cluster Randomised Feasibility Study of a Revised Teaching Assistant-Led Extracurricular Physical Activity Intervention for 8 to 10 Year Olds
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(1), 131; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16010131
Received: 9 November 2018 / Revised: 12 December 2018 / Accepted: 14 December 2018 / Published: 6 January 2019
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Abstract
Many children are not sufficiently physically active. We conducted a cluster-randomised feasibility trial of a revised after-school physical activity (PA) programme delivered by trained teaching assistants (TAs) to assess the potential evidence of promise for increasing moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA). Participants (n [...] Read more.
Many children are not sufficiently physically active. We conducted a cluster-randomised feasibility trial of a revised after-school physical activity (PA) programme delivered by trained teaching assistants (TAs) to assess the potential evidence of promise for increasing moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA). Participants (n = 335) aged 8–10 years were recruited from 12 primary schools in South West England. Six schools were randomised to receive the intervention and six acted as non-intervention controls. In intervention schools, TAs were trained to deliver an after-school programme for 15 weeks. The difference in mean accelerometer-assessed MVPA between intervention and control schools was assessed at follow-up (T1). The cost of programme delivery was estimated. Two schools did not deliver the intervention, meaning four intervention and six control schools were analysed at T1. There was no evidence for a difference in MVPA at T1 between intervention and control groups. Programme delivery cost was estimated at £2.06 per pupil per session. Existing provision in the 12 schools cost £5.91 per pupil per session. Action 3:30 was feasible to deliver and considerably cheaper than existing after-school provision. No difference in weekday MVPA was observed at T1 between the two groups, thus progression to a full trial is not warranted. Full article
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2018

Jump to: 2019

Open AccessArticle
The Relationships between Park Quality, Park Usage, and Levels of Physical Activity in Low-Income, African American Neighborhoods
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(1), 85; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16010085
Received: 25 October 2018 / Revised: 18 December 2018 / Accepted: 22 December 2018 / Published: 30 December 2018
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Abstract
Parks can be an important, low-cost neighborhood resource to increase physical activity and reduce overweight and obesity. The quality of parks, however, may impact use. This study used observational data to examine the relationships between park quality, park usage and levels of physical [...] Read more.
Parks can be an important, low-cost neighborhood resource to increase physical activity and reduce overweight and obesity. The quality of parks, however, may impact use. This study used observational data to examine the relationships between park quality, park usage and levels of physical activity among users in 31 parks within low-income, African American neighborhoods. Relationships between park use and park characteristics (signs of disorder, attractiveness, and number of activity settings) varied by gender and user activity level. No variables of interest were significant for overall number of male users; whereas, disorder and attractiveness were significant for overall number of female users. Parks with signs of disorder were associated with 49% fewer female users (IRR = 0.51, 95% CI = (0.34–0.77)) and attractive parks with 146% more female users (IRR = 2.46, 95% CI = (1.39–4.33)). Similar significant relationships were found among active but not sedentary female users. Communities may consider increasing park maintenance and addressing attractiveness in existing parks as a relatively low-cost environmental strategy to encourage park use, increase physical activity, and reduce the burden of obesity, especially among women in low-income, African-American communities. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Perceived Facilitators and Barriers in Response to a Walking Intervention in Rural Cancer Survivors: A Qualitative Exploration
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(12), 2824; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15122824
Received: 20 November 2018 / Revised: 6 December 2018 / Accepted: 8 December 2018 / Published: 11 December 2018
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Abstract
Physical activity has numerous associated benefits for cancer survivors. Compared to their urban counterparts, rural and remote Australians experience a health disadvantage, including poorer survival rate after the diagnosis of cancer. The purpose of this qualitative study was to (a) investigate factors that [...] Read more.
Physical activity has numerous associated benefits for cancer survivors. Compared to their urban counterparts, rural and remote Australians experience a health disadvantage, including poorer survival rate after the diagnosis of cancer. The purpose of this qualitative study was to (a) investigate factors that motivated or inhibited walking in rural participants during a 12-week intervention and (b) to investigate factors that motivated or inhibited physical activity behavior change three months post-intervention. Ten cancer survivors living in rural areas of South Australia participated in a 12-week computer-delivered walking-based intervention during which they reported daily steps, daily affect, and ratings of perceived exertion. Based on this information, individualized daily step goals were sent to them to increase walking. Following the intervention, participants engaged in face-to-face semi-structured interviews. Interviews were recorded, transcribed and coded using thematic analysis. Participants identified a range of physical, psychological, social, environmental, and organizational motivators and barriers. Participants appreciated the monitoring and support from the research team, but some voiced a need for better transition to post-program and many desired ongoing support to maintain their motivation. Future studies should incorporate strategies to help walking behavior to become more intrinsically motivated and therefore sustained. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Untapped Resources: 10- to 13-Year-Old Primary Schoolchildren’s Views on Additional Physical Activity in the School Setting: A Focus Group Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(12), 2713; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15122713
Received: 26 October 2018 / Revised: 24 November 2018 / Accepted: 24 November 2018 / Published: 1 December 2018
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Abstract
Schools are considered ideal venues to promote physical activity (PA) in children. However, a knowledge gap exists on how to adequately integrate PA into the school day and in particular, on the preferences of children regarding additional PA in school. Therefore, the aim [...] Read more.
Schools are considered ideal venues to promote physical activity (PA) in children. However, a knowledge gap exists on how to adequately integrate PA into the school day and in particular, on the preferences of children regarding additional PA in school. Therefore, the aim of our qualitative study was to gain comprehensive insight into 10–13-year-old primary schoolchildren’s perspectives on how to increase PA in the school setting. We conducted nine focus groups (32 girls and 20 boys) with children attending the final two grades of primary school in the Netherlands. We used inductive thematic analysis to analyze the data. The results showed that children were enthusiastic about additional PA in school. Children suggested various ways to increase PA, including more time for PA in the existing curriculum, e.g., physical education (PE), recess, and occasional activities, such as field trips or sports days; school playground adaptation; improving the content of PE; and implementing short PA breaks and physically active academic lessons. Children emphasized variation and being given a voice in their PA participation as a prerequisite to keep PA enjoyable and interesting in the long term. Finally, children mentioned the role of the teacher and making efforts to accommodate all children and their different preferences as important. Children have concrete ideas, acknowledging the challenges that accompany integrating additional PA in school. We therefore recommend actively involving children in efforts to increase school-based PA and to make “additional PA in school” a shared project of teachers and students. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Changes in Metabolic Syndrome Severity Following Individualized Versus Standardized Exercise Prescription: A Feasibility Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(11), 2594; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15112594
Received: 10 October 2018 / Revised: 6 November 2018 / Accepted: 15 November 2018 / Published: 20 November 2018
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Abstract
This study sought to investigate the efficacy of standardized versus individualized exercise intensity prescription on metabolic syndrome (MetS) severity following a 12-week exercise intervention. A total of 38 experimental participants (47.8 ± 12.2 yr, 170.7 ± 8.0 cm, 82.6 ± 18.7 kg, 26.9 [...] Read more.
This study sought to investigate the efficacy of standardized versus individualized exercise intensity prescription on metabolic syndrome (MetS) severity following a 12-week exercise intervention. A total of 38 experimental participants (47.8 ± 12.2 yr, 170.7 ± 8.0 cm, 82.6 ± 18.7 kg, 26.9 ± 6.7 mL·k−1·min−1) were randomized to one of two exercise interventions (exercise intensity prescribed using heart rate reserve or ventilatory threshold). Following the 12-week intervention, MetS z-score was significantly improved for the standardized (−2.0 ± 3.1 to −2.8 ± 2.8 [p = 0.01]) and individualized (−3.3 ± 2.3 to −3.9 ± 2.2 [p = 0.04]) groups. When separating participants based on prevalence of MetS at baseline and MetS z-score responsiveness, there were six and three participants in the standardized and individualized groups, respectively, with three or more MetS risk factors. Of the six participants in the standardized group, 83% (5/6) of the participants were considered responders, whereas 100% (3/3) of the individualized participants were responders. Furthermore, only 17% (1/6) of the participants with MetS at baseline in the standardized group no longer had symptoms of MetS following the intervention. In the individualized group, 67% (2/3) of participants with baseline MetS were not considered to have MetS at week 12. These findings suggest that an individualized approach to the exercise intensity prescription may ameliorate the severity of MetS. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Effects of an Empowerment-Based Health-Promotion School Intervention on Physical Activity and Sedentary Time among Adolescents in a Multicultural Area
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(11), 2542; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15112542
Received: 11 September 2018 / Revised: 5 November 2018 / Accepted: 12 November 2018 / Published: 13 November 2018
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Abstract
Physical activity (PA) decreases with age, and interventions are needed to promote PA during adolescence, especially, among those in low-socioeconomic status (SES) areas. The aim of this study was to investigate whether a two-year, empowerment-based health-promotion school intervention had any effects on changes [...] Read more.
Physical activity (PA) decreases with age, and interventions are needed to promote PA during adolescence, especially, among those in low-socioeconomic status (SES) areas. The aim of this study was to investigate whether a two-year, empowerment-based health-promotion school intervention had any effects on changes in (a) moderate-to-vigorous PA (MVPA), (b) sedentary time (SED), (c) exercise training (ET) frequency, and (d) ET duration, among adolescents. Participants (aged 12–13 years at baseline) from one intervention school and two control schools, were recruited from a multicultural area of Sweden, characterized by low-SES. During the course of the two-year intervention, a total of 135 participants (43% boys) were included in the study. The intervention was developed and implemented as a result of cooperation and shared decision-making among the researchers and the participants. MVPA and SED were measured with accelerometers, and ET frequency and duration was self-reported at the beginning of the seventh, eighth, and ninth grade, respectively. There were no significant effects of the two-year, empowerment-based health-promotion school intervention on changes in the accelerometer-measured MVPA and SED, or the self-reported ET frequency and duration, among the adolescents. Overall, the intervention was unsuccessful at promoting PA and reducing SED. Several possible explanations for the intervention’s lack of effects are discussed. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Prevalence of Total Physical Activity, Muscle-Strengthening Activities, and Excessive TV Viewing among Older Adults; and Their Association with Sociodemographic Factors
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(11), 2499; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15112499
Received: 17 September 2018 / Revised: 6 November 2018 / Accepted: 7 November 2018 / Published: 8 November 2018
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Abstract
The study aimed to describe the prevalence of meeting moderate-to-vigorous-intensity physical activity (MVPA), muscle-strengthening (MS) activities, and television (TV) viewing guidelines, and their association with sociodemographic factors. Data from older adults aged 65 or above were sampled by age and sex to the [...] Read more.
The study aimed to describe the prevalence of meeting moderate-to-vigorous-intensity physical activity (MVPA), muscle-strengthening (MS) activities, and television (TV) viewing guidelines, and their association with sociodemographic factors. Data from older adults aged 65 or above were sampled by age and sex to the population aged 65+ years for each area in Taiwan and collected through telephone interviews. The prevalence of meeting MVPA and MS activities, MVPA and MS activities guidelines, and excessive TV viewing were calculated. We also investigated their associations with sociodemographic variables using logistic regression analyses. A total of 1068 older adults (response rate: 32.5%) participated in the present study. 79.4% met the MVPA guidelines (150 min weekly), 25.3% met the MS guidelines (twice a week), 22.4% met both MVPA and MS guidelines, and 53.1% engaged in excessive TV viewing (more than or equal to two hours per day). Overall, in old age, low educational level was associated with lower odds of meeting MVPA and MS activities, and both the MVPA and MS activity guidelines; while living alone and having no full-time job had higher odds of excessive TV viewing. A large number of older adults do not meet the MS recommendations, but are engaged in excessive TV viewing. Our findings may be important for public health interventions to promote MS and avoid excessive TV viewing, especially for at-risk subgroups. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Investigating Motor Competence in Association with Sedentary Behavior and Physical Activity in 7- to 11-Year-Old Children
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(11), 2470; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15112470
Received: 11 October 2018 / Revised: 1 November 2018 / Accepted: 2 November 2018 / Published: 5 November 2018
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Abstract
Children’s motor competence (MC) has declined in the past decades, while sedentary behavior (SB) has increased. This study examined the association between MC and physical activity (PA) levels among primary schoolchildren. Demographics, body height and weight, MC (Athletic Skills Track), and PA levels [...] Read more.
Children’s motor competence (MC) has declined in the past decades, while sedentary behavior (SB) has increased. This study examined the association between MC and physical activity (PA) levels among primary schoolchildren. Demographics, body height and weight, MC (Athletic Skills Track), and PA levels (ActiGraph, GT3X+) were assessed among 595 children (291 boys, mean age = 9.1 years, SD = 1.1). MC was standardized into five categories: from very low to very high. PA levels were classified into SB, light PA (LPA), and moderate-to-vigorous PA (MVPA). Mixed-model analyses were conducted with PA levels as dependent variables and MC as the independent variable, while adjusting for age, gender, and body mass index (BMI) z-score on the individual level. A negative association between MC and SB and a positive association between MC and MVPA were found. The strength of both associations increased as children expressed lower or higher levels of MC. MC is an important correlate of both SB and MVPA, particularly for children with very high or low MC. Developing and improving children’s MC may contribute to spending less time in SB and more time in MVPA, particularly for high-risk groups, i.e., children with low MC. Moreover, addressing MC development and PA promotion simultaneously might create positive feedback loops for both children’s MC and PA levels. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Step Rate Thresholds Associated with Moderate and Vigorous Physical Activity in Adults
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(11), 2454; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15112454
Received: 30 August 2018 / Revised: 25 October 2018 / Accepted: 1 November 2018 / Published: 3 November 2018
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Abstract
Adults are recommended to engage in 150 min of moderate (MPA) to vigorous (VPA) aerobic physical activity per week, with the public health message of obtaining 3000 steps in 30 min. There is a paucity of research on step rate thresholds that correspond [...] Read more.
Adults are recommended to engage in 150 min of moderate (MPA) to vigorous (VPA) aerobic physical activity per week, with the public health message of obtaining 3000 steps in 30 min. There is a paucity of research on step rate thresholds that correspond to absolute MVPA (moderate = 3 METs, vigorous = 6 METs) with no research evaluating adult relative MVPA (moderate = 40% VO2max, vigorous = 60% VO2max). Anthropometric differences also influence intensity-related step rate thresholds. The purpose of this study was to identify step rates across a range of walking intensities so that mathematical models incorporating anthropometric factors could be used to identify individualized MVPA step rate thresholds. Forty-three adults (25♀; age = 39.4 ± 15.2 years) completed a staged treadmill walking protocol with pedometers and indirect calorimetry: six-minutes at 2.4, 3.2, 4.0, 5.6, 6.4, 7.2 km/h. Mathematical modelling revealed absolute and relative MPA step rate thresholds of ~100 steps/minute (spm) and ~125 spm, respectively. VPA corresponded to step rates of ~133 spm and ~139 spm for absolute and relative thresholds respectively. The current public message of 3000 steps in 30 min is valid for absolute MPA. However, VPA is achieved at higher thresholds than previously reported, more than 130 spm for healthy adults. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
The Effect of Detraining after a Period of Training on Cardiometabolic Health in Previously Sedentary Individuals
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(10), 2303; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15102303
Received: 11 September 2018 / Revised: 4 October 2018 / Accepted: 16 October 2018 / Published: 19 October 2018
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Abstract
The purpose of this study was to quantify the time-magnitude changes in cardiometabolic health outcomes that occur with cessation of regular exercise training. All participants (n = 22) performed baseline testing, completed a 13-week exercise program, and completed post-program testing. Upon completion [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was to quantify the time-magnitude changes in cardiometabolic health outcomes that occur with cessation of regular exercise training. All participants (n = 22) performed baseline testing, completed a 13-week exercise program, and completed post-program testing. Upon completion of the 13-week exercise program, participants were randomized to one of the following two treatment groups: (1) the treatment group that continued their exercise for 4 weeks (TRAIN); or (2) the treatment group that discontinued exercise (DETRAIN). Changes from baseline to 13 weeks in both the TRAIN and DETRAIN treatment groups for maximal oxygen consumption (VO2max), body fat percentage, mean arterial pressure, high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, and triglycerides were significantly favourable (p < 0.05). VO2max, body fat percentage, and favourable cardiometabolic health adaptations continued to improve (p < 0.05) with an additional one month of exercise training. Upon cessation of exercise, all measures of VO2max and body fat percentage, along with mean arterial pressure, HDL cholesterol, and triglycerides significantly worsened (p < 0.05) in the DETRAIN treatment group. Favourable training adaptations were further enhanced with an additional month of continued exercise training, and cessation of regular exercise rapidly abolished all training adaptations within one month. These novel findings underscore the importance of sustained and uninterrupted exercise training. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Effect of a 12-Week Online Walking Intervention on Health and Quality of Life in Cancer Survivors: A Quasi-Randomized Controlled Trial
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(10), 2081; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15102081
Received: 28 August 2018 / Revised: 17 September 2018 / Accepted: 20 September 2018 / Published: 21 September 2018
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Abstract
Cancer survivors are at an increased risk of experiencing physical and psychological ill-effects following cancer treatment. Rural cancer survivors are at a greater risk of future health problems following a cancer diagnosis compared to their urban counterparts. Physical activity has been targeted as [...] Read more.
Cancer survivors are at an increased risk of experiencing physical and psychological ill-effects following cancer treatment. Rural cancer survivors are at a greater risk of future health problems following a cancer diagnosis compared to their urban counterparts. Physical activity has been targeted as a health promotion priority in cancer survivors. Research indicates that a large portion of cancer survivors do not meet physical activity recommendations. The purpose of this quasi-randomized controlled trial was to test the effectiveness of an online 12-week walking intervention designed for cancer survivors, and to explore its impact on physical health indicators and quality of life outcomes. Steps Toward Improving Diet and Exercise among cancer survivors (STRIDE) is an online resource designed according to Social Cognitive Theory and Self Determination Theory, based on individualized step goal setting. Measures of physiology, physical fitness, and quality of life were taken at the baseline, post-intervention, and three-month follow-up in an Intervention group (n = 46) and active Control group (n = 45). The Control group was provided with a pedometer but did not have access to the online program. Three-factor repeated measures ANOVAs indicated that there were improvements in physical fitness (p < 0.01), systolic blood pressure (p < 0.01), diastolic blood pressure (p < 0.01), waist girth (p < 0.01), mental health (p < 0.05), social functioning (p < 0.01), and general health (p < 0.01), but an increase in bodily pain (p < 0.01), from the baseline to week 12 and the three-month follow-up, irrespective of group allocation. Pedometer interventions, delivered with or without online support and step goal setting, show promise for improving the overall health of cancer survivors, at least in the short term. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
A Cross Sectional Examination of the Relation Between Depression and Frequency of Leisure Time Physical Exercise among the Elderly in Jinan, China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(9), 2041; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15092041
Received: 28 August 2018 / Revised: 9 September 2018 / Accepted: 14 September 2018 / Published: 18 September 2018
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Abstract
Depression has become a major global public health problem. Many studies have shown the positive effects of physical exercise on depression. However, few studies have examined the relationship between frequency of leisure time physical exercise and depression without considering the time and intensity [...] Read more.
Depression has become a major global public health problem. Many studies have shown the positive effects of physical exercise on depression. However, few studies have examined the relationship between frequency of leisure time physical exercise and depression without considering the time and intensity of exercise among middle-aged and elderly people of urban communities in northern China. We conducted a cross-sectional survey that included 1604 participants among urban residents aged 50 years or older in China to evaluate how the frequency of physical exercise was related to depression. Our study showed that the prevalence of depression in the urban community of Jinan is 16.52%. For physical exercise, the odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for 1~2 times per week, 3~4 times per week and ≥5 times per week were 1.137 (0.661, 1.953), 0.516 (0.304, 0.875) and 0.548 (0.392, 0.768) respectively, with adjustment for age, gender, marital status, BMI, hypertension, previously diagnosed type 2 diabetes, triglyceride, total cholesterol, soy food intake, milk food intake, vegetable and fruit intake and meat intake. We concluded that physically exercising three times a week is associated with a low prevalence of depression. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Associations of Physical Activity and Sedentary Time in Primary School Children with Their Parental Behaviors and Supports
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(9), 1995; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15091995
Received: 16 July 2018 / Revised: 5 September 2018 / Accepted: 7 September 2018 / Published: 13 September 2018
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Abstract
Background: The associations of objectively evaluated moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and sedentary time between primary school children and their fathers or mothers have not been fully understood. Therefore, we tested the associations in children. Methods: The participants were first to sixth grade [...] Read more.
Background: The associations of objectively evaluated moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and sedentary time between primary school children and their fathers or mothers have not been fully understood. Therefore, we tested the associations in children. Methods: The participants were first to sixth grade boys (n = 166, 9.4 ± 1.6 years) and girls (n = 202, 9.4 ± 1.6 years) and their parents (fathers, n = 123 and mothers, n = 321). MVPA and sedentary time were measured using triaxial accelerometry. The relationship between parental support which was assessed by self-reported questionnaire and children’s MVPA was also examined. Results: MVPA in the children was positively correlated with maternal MVPA after adjustment for the children’s gender, grade, body mass index z-score, paternal or maternal age, and school (p < 0.001). However, paternal or maternal sedentary time and paternal MVPA showed no significant association with sedentary time or MVPA in children. On the other hand, the percentage of MVPA in children who spent more time with their mothers on weekends was significantly lower than those who spent less time (p = 0.034). Children whose mothers watched their sports events had a significantly higher percentage of MVPA than those whose mothers did not watch these events (p = 0.008). There were no associations between children’s MVPA and paternal support. Conclusions: The findings of this study demonstrate the significance of maternal MVPA and support. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Does Physical Fitness Affect Academic Achievement among Japanese Adolescents? A Hybrid Approach for Decomposing Within-Person and Between-Persons Effects
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(9), 1901; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15091901
Received: 11 July 2018 / Revised: 24 August 2018 / Accepted: 30 August 2018 / Published: 1 September 2018
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Abstract
Positive association between physical fitness and academic achievement in adolescents has been suggested yet the causal effect of physical fitness on academic achievement remains unclear. This study examined if longitudinal changes in physical fitness were associated with changes in academic achievement among junior [...] Read more.
Positive association between physical fitness and academic achievement in adolescents has been suggested yet the causal effect of physical fitness on academic achievement remains unclear. This study examined if longitudinal changes in physical fitness were associated with changes in academic achievement among junior high school students. Analyses were based on a two-year with three time-point data of 567 students (aged 12–13 years old at the baseline-point; 303 boys) who entered in five Japanese junior high schools in 2015. Academic achievement was evaluated using the student’s overall grade point average. Comprehensive physical fitness score was summed up from eight fitness tests: 50-m sprint, standing broad jump, repeated side-steps, sit and reach, sit-ups, hand-grip strength, handball throw, and 20-m shuttle run or endurance run. The hybrid regression model was applied to examine the impact of change in physical fitness on change in academic achievement using multiple imputation to account for non-response at follow-up. The changes in fitness score within-person and the differences in average of fitness score of three-time points between-person were associated with change in overall grade point average for boys. No significant association between fitness score and overall grade point average was observed in girls. Opportunities for increased physical fitness may be important to support academic achievement, particularly in junior high school boys. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
A Daily Cup of Tea or Coffee May Keep You Moving: Association between Tea and Coffee Consumption and Physical Activity
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(9), 1812; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15091812
Received: 13 July 2018 / Revised: 3 August 2018 / Accepted: 15 August 2018 / Published: 22 August 2018
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Abstract
Physical activity (PA) is an independent predictor of mortality and frailty in middle-aged women, but fatigue remains a major barrier in this group. While caffeine intake has been associated with reduced exertion and perceived fatigue, it is not well understood whether consumption of [...] Read more.
Physical activity (PA) is an independent predictor of mortality and frailty in middle-aged women, but fatigue remains a major barrier in this group. While caffeine intake has been associated with reduced exertion and perceived fatigue, it is not well understood whether consumption of naturally caffeinated drinks is associated with physical activity. The aim of this study was to determine whether habitual consumption of coffee and tea is associated with participation in physical activity. Women (n = 7580) from the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health were included in this investigation. Participants reported average tea and coffee intake over the last 12 months and usual PA. Logistic regression models were adjusted for relevant health and lifestyle confounders, and Sobel test was used for mediation analysis. Participants who consumed 1–2 cups of coffee/day were 17% more likely to meet the recommended 500 metabolic equivalent (MET).min/week than women who had <1 cup/day (odds ratio (OR) 1.17, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.04–1.32). Participants who reported drinking either 1–2 cups or >3 cups/day of tea were 13–26% more likely to meet 500 MET.min/week than those who had <1 cup/day (OR 1.26, 95% CI 1.08–1.46 and OR 1.13, 95% CI 1.01–1.26, respectively). Tiredness and energy mediated associations between intake of coffee (fully) and tea (partially) and PA. Middle-aged women who drink 1–2 cups of coffee or >1 cup of tea/day are more likely to meet the moderate-to-vigorous PA guidelines than those who drink <1 cup/day. Future research is warranted to investigate causality and effects of specific coffee and tea amounts. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Moderators of School-Based Physical Activity Interventions on Cardiorespiratory Endurance in Primary School-Aged Children: A Meta-Regression
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(8), 1764; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15081764
Received: 10 July 2018 / Revised: 1 August 2018 / Accepted: 14 August 2018 / Published: 16 August 2018
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Abstract
The purpose of this study was to examine potential moderators of school-based physical activity interventions on cariorespiratory endurance in primary school-aged children using meta-regression. An Internet search with several databases was employed, extracting school-based pediatric physical activity intervention studies published within the past [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was to examine potential moderators of school-based physical activity interventions on cariorespiratory endurance in primary school-aged children using meta-regression. An Internet search with several databases was employed, extracting school-based pediatric physical activity intervention studies published within the past 30 years. Studies were included if there was a control or comparison group, if the study sample included primary school-aged children, if the targeted outcome of cardiorespiratory endurance was objectively assessed, if the intervention was at least partially school-based, and if the effect estimate’s variability was reported. An inverse-variance random effects meta-regression was employed using the primary predictors of component number (single component or multi-component) and intervention length using 20 extracted studies with 23 total effects. The overall pooled effect on cardiorespiratory endurance was statistically significant (Hedges’ g = 0.30, 95% C.I.: 0.19–0.40; p < 0.001). Using random effects meta-regression, neither component number (b = −0.09, 95% C.I.: −0.40–0.23; p = 0.560) or intervention length (b = 0.001, 95% C.I.: −0.002–0.004; p = 0.427) yielded a significant modifying effect on cardiorespiratory endurance. School-based physical activity interventions have a significant pooled effect on cardiorespiratory endurance in primary school-aged children. Component number and intervention length does not modify this effect, suggesting other sources for between-study heterogeneity. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Youth and Adult Visitation and Physical Activity Intensity at Rural and Urban Parks
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(8), 1760; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15081760
Received: 30 July 2018 / Accepted: 15 August 2018 / Published: 16 August 2018
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Abstract
Less physical activity among rural residents may contribute to rural-urban health disparities. Parks can be ideal community resources for promoting physical activity. This study compared park visitation and activity intensity at 15 urban and 15 rural parks matched for acreage and amenities. Parks [...] Read more.
Less physical activity among rural residents may contribute to rural-urban health disparities. Parks can be ideal community resources for promoting physical activity. This study compared park visitation and activity intensity at 15 urban and 15 rural parks matched for acreage and amenities. Parks were observed in the morning, afternoon, and evening on 4 days to determine number of visitors, activity intensity, and amenity use. A total of 5486 visitors were observed with no differences in percentages of males (55.5% vs. 53.9%) and females (44.5% vs. 46.1%) or percentages of weekday (82.4% vs. 81.9%) and weekend (17.6% vs. 18.1%) visitors. The probability of visitors sitting was greater and in moderate intensity activity lower at rural parks. A greater proportion of children (25.0% vs. 14.5%) in rural parks, and teens in urban parks (8.0% vs. 69.6%), were observed on sport fields. A greater proportion of adults in urban areas (12.5% vs. 46.0%) were observed spectating sports. Greater proportions of rural children (10.9% vs. 3.5%), teens (34.1% vs. 12.4%), and adults (38.9% vs. 10.1%) were observed using shelters. Thus, when similar amenities are available, rural and urban parks are used differently, especially by youth. The urban park study results cannot be wholly applied to rural parks. Full article
Open AccessReview
Relationships between Motor Proficiency and Academic Performance in Mathematics and Reading in School-Aged Children and Adolescents: A Systematic Review
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(8), 1603; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15081603
Received: 2 July 2018 / Revised: 21 July 2018 / Accepted: 26 July 2018 / Published: 28 July 2018
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Abstract
Positive associations exist between physical activity, cognition, and academic performance in children and adolescents. Further research is required to examine which factors underpin the relationships between physical activity and academic performance. This systematic review aimed to identify, critically appraise, and synthesize findings of [...] Read more.
Positive associations exist between physical activity, cognition, and academic performance in children and adolescents. Further research is required to examine which factors underpin the relationships between physical activity and academic performance. This systematic review aimed to identify, critically appraise, and synthesize findings of studies examining relationships between motor proficiency and academic performance in mathematics and reading in typically developing school-aged children and adolescents. A systematic search of electronic databases was performed to identify relevant studies. Fifty-five eligible articles were critically appraised and key data was extracted and synthesized. Findings support associations between several components of motor proficiency and academic performance in mathematics and reading. There was evidence that fine motor proficiency was significantly and positively associated with academic performance in mathematics and reading, particularly during the early years of school. Significant positive associations were also evident between academic performance and components of gross motor proficiency, specifically speed and agility, upper-limb coordination, and total gross motor scores. Preliminary evidence from a small number of experimental studies suggests motor skill interventions in primary school settings may have a positive impact on academic performance in mathematics and/or reading. Future research should include more robust study designs to explore more extensively the impact of motor skill interventions on academic performance. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Walking and Walkability in Pre-Set and Self-Defined Neighborhoods: A Mental Mapping Study in Older Adults
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(7), 1363; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15071363
Received: 22 May 2018 / Revised: 15 June 2018 / Accepted: 20 June 2018 / Published: 28 June 2018
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Abstract
Neighborhood walkability contributes to older adults’ walking. However, associations vary depending on the neighborhood definition applied as well as between objective and perceived walkability measures. Therefore, this study aimed to comparatively assess walkability indices for commonly used pedestrian network buffers and perceived neighborhood [...] Read more.
Neighborhood walkability contributes to older adults’ walking. However, associations vary depending on the neighborhood definition applied as well as between objective and perceived walkability measures. Therefore, this study aimed to comparatively assess walkability indices for commonly used pedestrian network buffers and perceived neighborhood areas. A total of 97 adults aged ≥65 years answered a written physical activity questionnaire and 69 respondents participated in face-to-face interviews that involved mental mapping, i.e., to draw perceived neighborhood delineations on paper maps. Hierarchical regression analyses were used to compare the contribution of walkability indices for pre-set buffers and self-defined neighborhoods to older adults’ walking after adjusting for covariates. Results show that older adults’ self-defined neighborhoods are significantly larger, less home-centered, and more walkable than commonly used buffers. Furthermore, the variance accounted for in neighborhood walking increased from 35.9% to 40.4% (ΔR2 = 0.046; p = 0.029), when the walkability index was calculated for self-defined neighborhoods rather than pre-set buffers. Therefore, the study supports that geometric differences between pre-set buffers and older adults’ spatial ideas of perceived neighborhoods have a significant influence on estimated walkability effects and that exposure areas should be matched with the spatial dimension of outcome variables in future research. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Temporal Trends in Sports Participation among Adolescents between 2001 and 2015: A French School- and Territory-Based Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(7), 1335; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15071335
Received: 24 April 2018 / Revised: 16 June 2018 / Accepted: 22 June 2018 / Published: 26 June 2018
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Abstract
Improving adolescents’ levels of sport and physical activity (PA) is an official public health issue. French national government plans were launched in 2001, 2006, and 2011 to improve the participation levels of citizens. These plans should be monitored. To date, information on temporal [...] Read more.
Improving adolescents’ levels of sport and physical activity (PA) is an official public health issue. French national government plans were launched in 2001, 2006, and 2011 to improve the participation levels of citizens. These plans should be monitored. To date, information on temporal trends in sports has come from the national population. However, no data are available to measure temporal trends in different territories across the country. Our study aimed to measure these trends among a representative sample of adolescent students of the third biggest French region (Bouches-du-Rhône), but also one of the poorest, between 2001 and 2015. Three surveys were conducted in 2001, 2008, and 2015 in high schools (n = 3218). Logistic regressions adjusted for age were used to determine the impact of socioeconomic status (SES) on sports participation and to measure the changes in sport participation rates. Participation declined among all subgroups of adolescents: from 79.0% to 65.8%. The greatest decrease was observed for boys with a high SES, whilst the lowest was for the high-SES girls. We observed that SES inequalities in access to sport increased among the girls, whilst they reduced among the boys. National government plans seem to have had limited success in this territory. Next to national studies, there is a need to develop territory specific studies which could show important disparities across the national territory. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Resident Perceptions of Neighborhood Conditions, Food Access, Transportation Usage, and Obesity in a Rapidly Changing Central City
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(6), 1201; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15061201
Received: 10 May 2018 / Revised: 29 May 2018 / Accepted: 4 June 2018 / Published: 7 June 2018
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Abstract
There is a lack of research on obesity that uses primary data and fine-grained information on neighborhoods. I use primary data for 367 participants in Detroit to examine neighborhood predictors of obesity. These data were supplemented with public data. I considered multilevel and [...] Read more.
There is a lack of research on obesity that uses primary data and fine-grained information on neighborhoods. I use primary data for 367 participants in Detroit to examine neighborhood predictors of obesity. These data were supplemented with public data. I considered multilevel and spatial modeling, but the data lent itself best to ordinary least squares (OLS) regressions. I find that socioeconomic factors, the built environment, transportation usage, and perceptions of neighborhoods are important predictors of obesity. Importantly, litter is associated with higher levels of obesity. Planners can take measures to reduce litter and collaborate with other policy-makers to encourage less driving, though drawing direct lines of causality is complicated. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
A Cross-Sectional Examination of Physical Activity Levels and Their Socio-Demographic Determinants in Southern Tanzania
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(6), 1054; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15061054
Received: 10 April 2018 / Revised: 9 May 2018 / Accepted: 22 May 2018 / Published: 23 May 2018
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Abstract
Physical activity is essential for healthy aging. Evidence suggests that vigorous-intensity physical activity (VPA) may be more beneficial than moderate-intensity physical activity (MPA). We examined physical activity levels (MPA, VPA and total physical activity), and their socio-demographic determinants in 2311 participants (15–93 years; [...] Read more.
Physical activity is essential for healthy aging. Evidence suggests that vigorous-intensity physical activity (VPA) may be more beneficial than moderate-intensity physical activity (MPA). We examined physical activity levels (MPA, VPA and total physical activity), and their socio-demographic determinants in 2311 participants (15–93 years; 68% women) of the MZIMA Open Community Cohort, who had complete relevant data. Physical activity levels were estimated in minutes per week across three domains—work, leisure and transport. We created three outcome variables: low MPA (<150 min per week of MPA), low VPA (<75 min per week of VPA) and insufficient physical activity (IPA: <150 min per week of total physical activity) and applied sample-weighted multivariable logistic regression to assess associations with potential socio-demographic determinants. Prevalence of IPA, low MPA and low VPA were 25%, 26% and 65% respectively. IPA and low MPA were correlated (Spearman R = 0.98; p < 0.001). Work, leisure and transport contributed 54%, 25% and 21% to total physical activity respectively. IPA and low VPA were significantly associated with female sex, lower education, non-manual occupation and frequent fruit consumption. We observed significant differences by sex (Pheterogeneity < 0.001), on the associations between education and IPA, and between age, occupation and low VPA. In conclusion, low levels of VPA, which were more pronounced in women, support the monitoring and promotion of VPA alongside overall physical activity. Leisure-related activities should also be promoted towards gains in vigorous-intensity and total physical activity in this setting. Full article
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health EISSN 1660-4601 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
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