Journal of Community Health

, Volume 39, Issue 6, pp 1092–1096 | Cite as

Environmental and Social Determinants of Youth Physical Activity Intensity Levels at Neighborhood Parks in Las Vegas, NV

Original Paper


Parks can play an important role in youth activity. This study used observational data to evaluate the relationship of environmental and social determinants to youth physical activity intensity levels in Las Vegas neighborhood parks. System for observing play and leisure activity in youth was used to code activity levels as sedentary, walking, or vigorous in five low-income and five high-income parks. Environmental determinants included amenities, incivilities, size, high-speed streets, sidewalk condition, and temperature. Social determinants included percent minority and Hispanic, gender, and income. A multinomial logistic regression model was performed. We observed 1,421 youth, 59 % male, 41 % female; 21 % were sedentary, 38 % walking, and 41 % vigorous. Males were more likely to be observed walking (OR 1.42) and vigorous (OR 2.21) when compared to sedentary. High-speed streets (OR 0.76), sidewalks condition (OR 0.34), and low-income neighborhoods (OR 0.07) was associated with decreased odds of vigorous activity; incivilities (OR 1.34) and amenities (OR 1.27) were associated with greater odds of being vigorous. Environmental and social determinants are associated with physical activity intensity levels at parks. Stakeholders should ensure quality parks, as they relate to physical activity levels in youth. Understanding environmental and social determinants that influence physical activity at parks is critical to utilizing their full potential in an effort to combat childhood obesity.


Built environment Urban planning Vigorous Moderate Childhood obesity 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Courtney Coughenour
    • 1
  • Lisa Coker
    • 1
  • Tim J. Bungum
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Community Health SciencesUniversity of Nevada, Las VegasLas VegasUSA

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