Advertisement

Physical Environments That Promote Physical Activity Among Older People

  • Jelle Van Cauwenberg
  • Andrea Nathan
  • Benedicte Deforche
  • Anthony Barnett
  • David Barnett
  • Ester Cerin
Chapter

Abstract

Characteristics of neighbourhoods, streets, and public open spaces can hinder or facilitate physical activity (PA) among older adults. This chapter aims to critically review key conceptual and theoretical frameworks and the empirical evidence about the relationships between aspects of the physical environment and older adults’ PA. Access to local shops, services, public transport, public open spaces (e.g., parks), and recreational facilities within walking distance along well-maintained and aesthetically pleasing streets with high-quality pedestrian infrastructure appeared to be key determinants of PA among older adults. Therefore, policies underpinning the implementation of such environments should be evaluated to further strengthen the evidence base.

References

  1. 8 80 Cities. (2016). 8 1 Cities. Retrieved from http://www.880cities.org/
  2. Alfonzo, M. A. (2005). To walk or not to walk? The hierarchy of walking needs. Environment & Behavior, 37(6), 808–836.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Barnett, A., Cerin, E., Zhang, C. J. P., Sit, C. H. P., Johnston, J. M., Cheung, M. M. C., & Lee, R. S. Y. (2016). Associations between the neighbourhood environment characteristics and physical activity in older adults with specific types of chronic conditions: The ALECS cross-sectional study. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition & Physical Activity, 13. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12966-016-0377-7.
  4. Berke, E. M., Koepsell, T. D., Moudon, A. V., Hoskins, R. E., & Larson, E. B. (2007). Association of the built environment with physical activity and obesity in older persons. American Journal of Public Health, 97(3), 486–492.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Borst, H. C., De Vries, S. I., Graham, J. M. A., Van Dongen, J. E. F., Bakker, I., & Miedema, H. M. E. (2009). Influence of environmental street characteristics on walking route choice of elderly people. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 29(4), 477–484. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvp.2009.08.002.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bracy, N. L., Millstein, R. A., Carlson, J. A., Conway, T. L., Sallis, J. F., Saelens, B. E., et al. (2014). Is the relationship between the built environment and physical activity moderated by perceptions of crime and safety? International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition & Physical Activity, 11. https://doi.org/10.1186/1479-5868-11-24.
  7. Cain, K. L., Millstein, R. A., Sallis, J. F., Conway, T. L., Gavand, K. A., Frank, L. D., et al. (2014). Contribution of streetscape audits to explanation of physical activity in four age groups based on the microscale audit of pedestrian streetscapes (MAPS). Social Science & Medicine, 116, 82–92. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.socscimed.2014.06.042.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Cao, X. Y., Mokhtarian, P. L., & Handy, S. L. (2010). Neighborhood design and the accessibility of the elderly: An empirical analysis in Northern California. International Journal of Sustainable Transportation, 4(6), 347–371. https://doi.org/10.1080/15568310903145212.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Carlson, J. A., Sallis, J. F., Conway, T. L., Saelens, B. E., Frank, L. D., Kerr, J., et al. (2012). Interactions between psychosocial and built environment factors in explaining older adults’ physical activity. Preventive Medicine, 54(1), 68–73. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ypmed.2011.10.004.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Cerin, E., Conway, T. L., Saelens, B. E., Frank, L. D., & Sallis, J. F. (2009). Cross-validation of the factorial structure of the neighborhood environment walkability scale (NEWS) and its abbreviated form (NEWS-A). International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition & Physical Activity, 6, 32. https://doi.org/10.1186/1479-5868-6-32.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Cerin, E., Chan, K. W., Macfarlane, D. J., Lee, K. Y., & Lai, P. C. (2011). Objective assessment of walking environments in ultra-dense cities: Development and reliability of the environment in Asia scan tool-Hong Kong version (EAST-HK). Health & Place, 17(4), 937–945. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.healthplace.2011.04.005.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Cerin, E., Lee, K. Y., Barnett, A., Sit, C. H. P., Cheung, M. C., & Chan, W. M. (2013a). Objectively-measured neighborhood environments and leisure-time physical activity in Chinese urban elders. Preventive Medicine, 56(1), 86–89. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ypmed.2012.10.024.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Cerin, E., Lee, K. Y., Barnett, A., Sit, C. H. P., Cheung, M. C., Chan, W. M., & Johnston, J. M. (2013b). Walking for transportation in Hong Kong Chinese urban elders: A cross-sectional study on what destinations matter and when. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition & Physical Activity, 10, 78. https://doi.org/10.1186/1479-5868-10-78.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Cerin, E., Macfarlane, D. J., Sit, C. H. P., Ho, S. Y., Johnston, J. M., Chou, K. L., et al. (2013c). Effects of built environment on walking among Hong Kong older adults. Hong Kong Medical Journal, 19(Suppl 4), 39–41.Google Scholar
  15. Cerin, E., Sit, C. H. P., Barnett, A., Cheung, M. C., & Chan, W. M. (2013d). Walking for recreation and perceptions of the neighborhood environment in older Chinese urban dwellers. Journal of Urban Health, 90(1), 56–66. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11524-012-9704-8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Cerin, E., Sit, C. H. P., Barnett, A., Johnston, J. M., Cheung, M. C., & Chan, W. M. (2014). Ageing in an ultra-dense metropolis: Perceived neighbourhood characteristics and utilitarian walking in Hong Kong elders. Public Health Nutrition, 17(1), 225–232. https://doi.org/10.1017/s1368980012003862.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Corseuil, M. W., Schneider, I. J. C., Silva, D. A. S., Costa, F. F., Silva, K. S., Borges, L. J., & D’Orsi, E. (2011). Perception of environmental obstacles to commuting physical activity in Brazilian elderly. Preventive Medicine, 53(4–5), 289–292. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ypmed.2011.07.016.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Davison, K. K., & Lawson, C. T. (2006). Do attributes in the physical environment influence children’s physical activity? A review of the literature. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition & Physical Activity, 3. https://doi.org/10.1186/1479-5868-3-19.
  19. De Sa, E., & Ardern, C. I. (2014). Neighbourhood walkability, leisure-time and transport-related physical activity in a mixed urban-rural area. PeerJ, 2, e440. https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.440.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Ding, D., & Gebel, K. (2012). Built environment, physical activity, and obesity: What have we learned from reviewing the literature? Health & Place, 18(1), 100–105. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.healthplace.2011.08.021.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Ding, D., Gebel, K., Phongsavan, P., Bauman, A. E., & Merom, D. (2014a). Driving: A road to unhealthy lifestyles and poor health outcomes. PLoS One, 9(6). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0094602.
  22. Ding, D., Sallis, J. F., Norman, G. J., Frank, L. D., Saelens, B. E., Kerr, J., et al. (2014b). Neighborhood environment and physical activity among older adults: Do the relationships differ by driving status? Journal of Aging & Physical Activity, 22(3), 421–431. https://doi.org/10.1123/japa.2012-0332.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Etman, A., Kamphuis, C. B. M., Prins, R. G., Burdorf, A., Pierik, F. H., & Van Lenthe, F. J. (2014). Characteristics of residential areas and transportational walking among frail and non-frail Dutch elderly: Does the size of the area matter? International Journal of Health Geographics, 13. https://doi.org/10.1186/1476-072x-13-7.
  24. Forsyth, A., Oakes, J. M., Lee, B., & Schmitz, K. H. (2009). The built environment, walking, and physical activity: Is the environment more important to some people than others? Transportation Research Part D, 14(1), 42–49. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.trd.2008.10.003.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Foster, S., & Giles-Corti, B. (2008). The built environment, neighborhood crime and constrained physical activity: An exploration of inconsistent findings. Preventive Medicine, 47(3), 241–251. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ypmed.2008.03.017.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Frank, L. D., Sallis, J. F., Saelens, B. E., Leary, L., Cain, K. L., Conway, T. L., & Hess, P. M. (2010). The development of a walkability index: Application to the neighborhood quality of life study. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 44(13), 924–933. https://doi.org/10.1136/bjsm.2009.058701.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Giehl, M. W. C., Hallal, P. C., Corseuil, C. W., Schneider, L. J. C., & D’Orsi, E. (2016). Built environment and walking behavior among Brazilian older adults: A population-based study. Journal of Physical Activity & Health, 13(6), 617–624. https://doi.org/10.1123/jpah.2015-0355.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Hanibuchi, T., Kawachi, I., Nakaya, T., Hirai, H., & Kondo, K. (2011). Neighborhood built environment and physical activity of Japanese older adults: Results from the Aichi Gerontological evaluation study (AGES). BMC Public Health, 11. https://doi.org/10.1186/1471-2458-11-657.
  29. Inoue, S., Ohya, Y., Odagiri, Y., Takamiya, T., Kamada, M., Okada, S., et al. (2011). Perceived neighborhood environment and walking for specific purposes among elderly Japanese. Journal of Epidemiology, 21(6), 481–490. https://doi.org/10.2188/jea.JE20110044.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Iwarsson, S. (2005). A long-term perspective on person-environment fit and ADL dependence among older Swedish adults. The Gerontologist, 45(3), 327–336. https://doi.org/10.1093/geront/45.3.327.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Jones, T., Chatterjee, K., Spinney, J., Street, E., Van Reekum, C., Spencer, B., et al. (2016). Cycle BOOM: Design for lifelong health and wellbeing. Retrieved from Oxford Brookes University, Oxford. http://d1qmdf3vop2l07.cloudfront.net/quaint-manatee.cloudvent.net/compressed/5ab7ab985c867240c4f1883d77e0fbb1.pdf
  32. Kerr, J., Emond, J. A., Badland, H., Reis, R. S., Sarmiento, O., Carlson, J. A., et al. (2016). Perceived neighborhood environmental attributes associated with walking and cycling for transport among adult residents of 17 cities in 12 countries: The IPEN study. Environmental Health Perspectives, 124(3), 290–298. https://doi.org/10.1289/ehp.1409466.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Kim, Y. H., & Kosma, M. (2013). Psychosocial and environmental correlates of physical activity among Korean older adults. Research on Aging, 35(6), 750–767. https://doi.org/10.1177/0164027512462412.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. King, A. C., Sallis, J. F., Frank, L. D., Saelens, B. E., Cain, K. L., Conway, T. L., et al. (2011). Aging in neighborhoods differing in walkability and income: Associations with physical activity and obesity in older adults. Social Science & Medicine, 73(10), 1525–1533. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.socscimed.2011.08.032.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Kolbe-Alexander, T. L., Pacheco, K., Tomaz, S. A., Karpul, D., & Lambert, E. V. (2015). The relationship between the built environment and habitual levels of physical activity in South African older adults: A pilot study. BMC Public Health, 15, 518. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-015-1853-8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Lawton, M. P., & Simon, B. (1968). The ecology of social relationships in housing for the elderly. The Gerontologist, 8(2), 108–115. https://doi.org/10.1093/geront/8.2.108.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Lu, J. J., Liang, L. C., Feng, Y., Li, R. N., & Liu, Y. (2015). Air pollution exposure and physical activity in China: Current knowledge, public health implications, and future research needs. International Journal of Environmental Research & Public Health, 12(11), 14887–14897. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph121114887.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Moran, M., Van Cauwenberg, J., Hercky-Linnewiel, R., Cerin, E., Deforche, B., & Plaut, P. (2014). Understanding the relationships between the physical environment and physical activity in older adults: A systematic review of qualitative studies. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition & Physical Activity, 11. https://doi.org/10.1186/1479-5868-11-79.
  39. Nagel, C. L., Carlson, N. E., Bosworth, M., & Michael, Y. L. (2008). The relation between neighborhood built environment and walking activity among older adults. American Journal of Epidemiology, 168(4), 461–468. https://doi.org/10.1093/aje/kwn158.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Nathan, A., Wood, L., & Giles-Corti, B. (2014). Perceptions of the built environment and associations with walking among retirement village residents. Environment & Behavior, 46(1), 46–69. https://doi.org/10.1177/0013916512450173.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Nyunt, M. S. Z., Shuvo, F. K., Eng, J. Y., Yap, K. B., Scherer, S., Hee, L. M., et al. (2015). Objective and subjective measures of neighborhood environment (NE): Relationships with transportation physical activity among older persons. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition & Physical Activity, 12. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12966-015-0276-3.
  42. Owen, N., Cerin, E., Leslie, E., Dutoit, L., Coffee, N., Frank, L. D., et al. (2007). Neighborhood walkability and the walking behavior of Australian adults. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 33(5), 387–395. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.amepre.2007.07.025.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Pelclová, J., Frömel, K., Bláha, L., Zając-Gawlak, I., & Tlučáková, L. (2012). Neighborhood environment and walking for transport and recreation in central European older adults. Acta Universitatis Palackianae Olomucensis Gymnica, 42(4), 49–56.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Pikora, T., Giles-Corti, B., Bull, F., Jamrozik, K., & Donovan, R. (2003). Developing a framework for assessment of the environmental determinants of walking and cycling. Social Science & Medicine, 56(8), 1693–1703. https://doi.org/10.1016/s0277-9536(02)00163-6.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Ranchod, Y. K., Roux, A. V. D., Evenson, K. R., Sanchez, B. N., & Moore, K. (2014). Longitudinal associations between neighborhood recreational facilities and change in recreational physical activity in the multi-ethnic study of atherosclerosis, 2000–2007. American Journal of Epidemiology, 179(3), 335–343. https://doi.org/10.1093/aje/kwt263.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Roux, A. V. D. (2001). Investigating neighborhood and area effects on health. American Journal of Public Health, 91(11), 1783–1789.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Saelens, B. E., Sallis, J. F., Black, J. B., & Chen, D. (2003). Neighborhood-based differences in physical activity: An environment scale evaluation. American Journal of Public Health, 93(9), 1552–1558. https://doi.org/10.2105/ajph.93.9.1552.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Sallis, J. F., Cervero, R., Ascher, W., Henderson, K., Kraft, M., & Kerr, J. (2006). An ecological approach to creating active living communities. Annual Review of Public Health, 27(1), 297–322. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev.publhealth.27.021405.102100.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Sallis, J. F., Saelens, B. E., Frank, L. D., Conway, T. L., Slymen, D. J., Cain, K. L., et al. (2009). Neighborhood built environment and income: Examining multiple health outcomes. Social Science & Medicine, 68(7), 1285–1293. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.socscimed.2009.01.017.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Salvador, E. P., Florindo, A. A., Reis, R. S., & Costa, E. F. (2009). Perception of the environment and leisure-time physical activity in the elderly. Revista de Saúde Pública, 43(6), 1–8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Satariano, W. (2006). Epidemiology of aging: An ecological approach. Sudbury: Jones and Bartlett Publishers.Google Scholar
  52. Shigematsu, R., Sallis, J. F., Conway, T. L., Saelens, B. E., Frank, L. D., Cain, K. L., et al. (2009). Age differences in the relation of perceived neighborhood environment to walking. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 41(2), 314–321. https://doi.org/10.1249/MSS.0b013e318185496c.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Spivock, M., Gauvin, L., Riva, M., & Brodeur, J. (2008). Promoting active living among people with physical disabilities: Evidence for neighborhood-level buoys. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 34(4), 291–298.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Stahl, A., Carlsson, G., Hovbrandt, P., & Iwarsson, S. (2008). “Let’s go for a walk!”: Identification and prioritisation of accessibility and safety measures involving elderly people in a residential area. European Journal of Ageing, 5(3), 265–273. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10433-008-0091-7.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Stokols, D. (1996). Translating social ecological theory into guidelines for community health promotion. American Journal of Health Promotion, 10, 282–298.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Sugiyama, T., & Ward Thompson, C. (2008). Associations between characteristics of neighbourhood open space and older people’s walking. Urban Forestry & Urban Greening, 7, 41–51.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Sundquist, K., Eriksson, U., Kawakami, N., Skog, L., Ohlsson, H., & Arvidsson, D. (2011). Neighborhood walkability, physical activity, and walking behavior: The Swedish neighborhood and physical activity (SNAP) study. Social Science & Medicine, 72(8), 1266–1273. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.socscimed.2011.03.004.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Transportation Research Board. (2005). Does the built environment influence physical activity? Examining the evidence. Retrieved from Washington, DC. http://onlinepubs.trb.org/onlinepubs/sr/sr282.pdf
  59. Tsunoda, K., Tsuji, T., Kitano, N., Mitsuishi, Y., Yoon, J., Yoon, J., & Okura, T. (2012). Associations of physical activity with neighborhood environments and transportation modes in older Japanese adults. Preventive Medicine, 55(2), 113–118. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ypmed.2012.05.013.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Van Cauwenberg, J., De Bourdeaudhuij, I., De Meester, F., Van Dyck, D., Salmon, J., Clarys, P., & Deforche, B. (2011). Relationship between the physical environment and physical activity in older adults: A systematic review. Health & Place, 17(2), 458–469. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.healthplace.2010.11.010.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Van Cauwenberg, J., Clarys, P., De Bourdeaudhuij, I., Van Holle, V., Verte, D., De Witte, N., et al. (2012a). Physical environmental factors related to walking and cycling in older adults: The Belgian aging studies. BMC Public Health, 12. https://doi.org/10.1186/1471-2458-12-142.
  62. Van Cauwenberg, J., Van Holle, V., Simons, D., Deridder, R., Clarys, P., Goubert, L., et al. (2012b). Environmental factors influencing older adults’ walking for transportation: A study using walk-along interviews. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition & Physical Activity, 9. https://doi.org/10.1186/1479-5868-9-85.
  63. Van Cauwenberg, J., Van Holle, V., De Bourdeaudhuij, I., Clarys, P., Nasar, J., Salmon, J., et al. (2014). Using manipulated photographs to identify features of streetscapes that may encourage older adults to walk for transport. PLoS One, 9(11). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0112107.
  64. Van Cauwenberg, J., De Bourdeaudhuij, I., Clarys, P., Nasar, J., Salmon, J., Goubert, L., & Deforche, B. (2016). Street characteristics preferred for transportation walking among older adults: A choice-based conjoint analysis with manipulated photographs. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition & Physical Activity, 13. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12966-016-0331-8.
  65. Van Cauwenberg, J., Clarys, P., De Bourdeaudhuij, I., Ghekiere, A., de Geus, B., Owen, N., & Deforche, B. (2018). Environmental influences on older adults’ transportation cycling experiences: A study using bike-along interviews. Landscape and Urban Planning, 169, 37–46.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Van Den Berg, A. E., Koole, S. L., & Van Der Wulp, N. Y. (2003). Environmental preference and restoration: (How) are they related? Journal of Environmental Psychology, 23(2), 135–146. https://doi.org/10.1016/s0272-4944(02)00111-1.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Van Dyck, D., Cardon, G., Deforche, B., Sallis, J. F., Owen, N., & De Bourdeaudhuij, I. (2010). Neighborhood SES and walkability are related to physical activity behavior in Belgian adults. Preventive Medicine, 50, S74–S79. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ypmed.2009.07.027.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Van Holle, V., Van Cauwenberg, J., Van Dyck, D., Deforche, B., Van De Weghe, N., & De Bourdeaudhuij, I. (2014). Relationship between neighborhood walkability and older adults’ physical activity: Results from the Belgian environmental physical activity study in seniors (BEPAS seniors). International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition & Physical Activity, 11, 110. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12966-014-0110-3.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Van Holle, V., Van Cauwenberg, J., Gheysen, F., Van Dyck, D., Deforche, B., Van De Weghe, N., & De Bourdeaudhuij, I. (2016). The association between Belgian older adults’ physical functioning and physical activity: What is the moderating role of the physical environment? PLoS One, 11(2), e0148398. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0148398.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Weden, M. M., Carpiano, R. M., & Robert, S. A. (2008). Subjective and objective neighborhood characteristics and adult health. Social Science & Medicine, 66(6), 1256–1270. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.socscimed.2007.11.041.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Wen, M., Hawkley, L. C., & Cacioppo, J. T. (2006). Objective and perceived neighborhood environment, individual SES and psychosocial factors, and self-rated health: An analysis of older adults in Cook County, Illinois. Social Science & Medicine, 63(10), 2575–2590.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  72. WHO. (2007). Global age-friendly cities: A guide. Geneva: WHO Press. http://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/10665/43755/1/9789241547307_eng.pdf.Google Scholar
  73. Wu, Y. T., Jones, N. R., Van Sluijs, E. M. F., Griffin, S. J., Wareham, N. J., & Jones, A. P. (2016). Perceived and objectively measured environmental correlates of domain specific physical activity in older English adults. Journal of Aging & Physical Activity, 24(4), 599–616. https://doi.org/10.1123/japa.2015-0241.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jelle Van Cauwenberg
    • 1
    • 2
  • Andrea Nathan
    • 3
  • Benedicte Deforche
    • 1
  • Anthony Barnett
    • 3
  • David Barnett
    • 3
  • Ester Cerin
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Public HealthGhent UniversityGhentBelgium
  2. 2.Research Foundation FlandersBrusselsBelgium
  3. 3.Institute for Health and AgeingAustralian Catholic UniversityMelbourneAustralia

Personalised recommendations