I would like to share three briefs from Active Living
about different community and
neighborhood factors that can encourage physical activity among children and adults. Being
more physically active has many health benefits, including preventing obesity. Please also
let your colleagues know about these resources and contact me with any questions you might
And we have many other resources that you can use to create active, healthy communities.
Let me know if you want more information.
1) A Study of Community Design, Greenness, and Physical Activity in Children using
Satellite, GPS and Accelerometer
Key Finding: Children were more active when they were in greener areas of their
neighborhoods, especially children living in a smart-growth community (characterized by
more walkable streets with housing closer to shops, commercial services, parks and
2) Out and About: Association of the Built Environment with Physical Activity
Behaviors of Adolescent Females<http://www.activelivingresearch.org/node/12589>
Key Finding: Girls' physical activity levels were higher when they were in areas with
high population density, and when they spent time near schools or parks.
3) Investigating the Impact of a Smart Growth Community on the Contexts of
Children's Physical Activity using Ecological Momentary
Key Finding: Zoning and land use policies that promote compact housing development,
walkable neighborhoods, close proximity of housing to shops and restaurants, and access to
parks and recreation areas have the potential to increase children's physical activity
and reduce their risk for obesity.
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Debbie Lou, Ph.D.
Active Living Research -- A National Program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Using evidence to prevent childhood obesity and create active communities
UC San Diego
3900 Fifth Ave, Suite 310
San Diego, CA 92103
Ph: (619) 260-6336
Fx: (619) 260-1510