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      Perception of built environmental factors and physical activity among adolescents in Nigeria

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          Abstract

          Background

          Understanding environmental factors related to adolescents’ physical activity can inform intervention for obesity control and prevention, but virtually no study has been conducted in the African region, where adolescents’ physical inactivity and chronic diseases rates are rising. This study assessed associations between perceived built environmental variables and adolescents’ physical activity (active transportation to school and leisure-time moderate-to- vigorous physical activity), and the moderating effects of neighborhood-level income on association between environmental variables and physical activity among Nigerian boys and girls.

          Methods

          Participants were 1006 adolescents (12–19 years, 50.4% girls) randomly selected from 11 secondary schools in Maiduguri city, Nigeria. Physical activity and perceptions of environmental characteristics were assessed by validated self-report questionnaires. Separate gender-based, hierarchical multiple moderated linear regression analyses were used to examine the direct associations between the environmental perceptions and physical activity variables (active transportation and leisure-time MVPA; dependent variables), as well as the moderating effects of neighborhood-level income.

          Results

          Only in boys were direct associations and interaction effect of neighborhood-level income found. Access to destinations was positively associated with active transportation to school (β = 0.18; CI = 0.67, 2.24); while residential density (β = 0.10; CI = 0.01, 1.74) and availability/quality of infrastructures (β = 0.14; CI = 0.49, 2.68) were positively associated with leisure-time MVPA. Also, neighborhood-level income moderated the association between perceived safety and leisure-time MVPA, with more perceived safety related to less MVPA (β = -0.16; CI = -0.01, -0.70) in boys living in high SES neighborhood but marginally related to more MVPA (β = 0.11; CI = -0.04, 2.88, p = 0.06) in boys living in low SES neighborhood.

          Conclusions

          Few environmental attributes were associated with adolescents’ physical activity in Nigeria. Future studies are needed to determine the multidimensional correlates of physical activity that may be relevant for both adolescents’ boys and girls in Nigeria.

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          Most cited references 43

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          A review of correlates of physical activity of children and adolescents.

          Understanding the factors that influence physical activity can aid the design of more effective interventions. Previous reviews of correlates of youth physical activity have produced conflicting results. A comprehensive review of correlates of physical activity was conducted, and semiquantitative results were summarized separately for children (ages 3-12) and adolescents (ages 13-18). The 108 studies evaluated 40 variables for children and 48 variables for adolescents. About 60% of all reported associations with physical activity were statistically significant. Variables that were consistently associated with children's physical activity were sex (male), parental overweight status, physical activity preferences, intention to be active, perceived barriers (inverse), previous physical activity, healthy diet, program/facility access, and time spent outdoors. Variables that were consistently associated with adolescents' physical activity were sex (male), ethnicity (white), age (inverse), perceived activity competence, intentions, depression (inverse), previous physical activity, community sports, sensation seeking, sedentary after school and on weekends (inverse), parent support, support from others, sibling physical activity, direct help from parents, and opportunities to exercise. These consistently related variables should be confirmed in prospective studies, and interventions to improve the modifiable variables should be developed and evaluated.
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            Understanding environmental influences on walking; Review and research agenda.

            Understanding how environmental attributes can influence particular physical activity behaviors is a public health research priority. Walking is the most common physical activity behavior of adults; environmental innovations may be able to influence rates of participation. Review of studies on relationships of objectively assessed and perceived environmental attributes with walking. Associations with environmental attributes were examined separately for exercise and recreational walking, walking to get to and from places, and total walking. Eighteen studies were identified. Aesthetic attributes, convenience of facilities for walking (sidewalks, trails); accessibility of destinations (stores, park, beach); and perceptions about traffic and busy roads were found to be associated with walking for particular purposes. Attributes associated with walking for exercise were different from those associated with walking to get to and from places. While few studies have examined specific environment-walking relationships, early evidence is promising. Key elements of the research agenda are developing reliable and valid measures of environmental attributes and walking behaviors, determining whether environment-behavior relationships are causal, and developing theoretical models that account for environmental influences and their interactions with other determinants.
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              Neighborhood environment and physical activity among youth a review.

              Research examining the association between environmental attributes and physical activity among youth is growing. An updated review of literature is needed to summarize the current evidence base, and to inform policies and environmental interventions to promote active lifestyles among young people. A literature search was conducted using the Active Living Research (ALR) literature database, an online database that codes study characteristics and results of published papers on built/social environment and physical activity/obesity/sedentary behavior. Papers in the ALR database were identified through PubMed, Web of Science, and SPORTDiscus using systematically developed and expert-validated search protocols. For the current review, additional inclusion criteria were used to select observational, quantitative studies among youth aged 3-18 years. Papers were categorized by design features, sample characteristics, and measurement mode. Relevant results were summarized, stratified by age (children or adolescents) and mode of measurement (objective or perceived) for environmental attributes and physical activity. Percentage of significant results was calculated. Mode of measurement greatly influenced the consistency of associations between environmental attributes and youth physical activity. For both children and adolescents, the most consistent associations involved objectively measured environmental attributes and reported physical activity. The most supported correlates for children were walkability, traffic speed/volume, access/proximity to recreation facilities, land-use mix, and residential density. The most supported correlates for adolescents were land-use mix and residential density. These findings support several recommendations for policy and environmental change from such groups as the IOM and National Physical Activity Plan. Copyright © 2011 American Journal of Preventive Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Journal
                Int J Behav Nutr Phys Act
                Int J Behav Nutr Phys Act
                The International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity
                BioMed Central
                1479-5868
                2014
                27 April 2014
                : 11
                : 56
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Department of Physiotherapy, College of Medical Sciences, University of Maiduguri, Maiduguri, Nigeria
                [2 ]Department of Movement and Sports Sciences, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Ghent University, Ghent, Belgium
                [3 ]Department of Biometry and Biomechanics, Faculty of Physical Education and Physiotherapy, Vrije Universiteit Brussels, Brussels, Belgium
                [4 ]Research Foundation Flanders, Brussels, Belgium
                Article
                1479-5868-11-56
                10.1186/1479-5868-11-56
                4008423
                24766710
                Copyright © 2014 Oyeyemi et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

                This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

                Categories
                Research

                Nutrition & Dietetics

                neighborhood environment, active transport, youth, socioeconomic status, africa

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