Active Living Strategy #2: Increase Access To Recreational Facilities/Sites

Our Healthier Communities Initiatives are built on the concept that local communities can work together to give all community members healthy choices and support the pursuit of healthy lifestyles.  More than 160 Ys are working in collaboration with community leaders to make changes in policies and the physical surroundings in those communities so that healthy living is within reach for individuals of all ages and backgrounds.




Active Living Strategy #2: Increase Access To Recreational Facilities/Sites

When people have access to local playgrounds, pools, and trails, they are more likely to choose physical activity and less likely to be obese. Policies to support opening a recreational site (e.g., parks, playgrounds, trails) have seen an increase in the physical activity of the residents.

 

The presence of a recreational facility (e.g., footpath, club, pool) is associated with an increased likelihood of engaging in recommended levels of physical activity and decreased odds of being overweight within a community. Communities with policies to support opening a recreational site (e.g., parks, playgrounds, trails) have seen an increase in the physical activity of the residents. For example, opening elementary school playgrounds after school hours provides communities with opportunities for outdoor activities. An introduction of trails may also increase physical activity for people who are not habitual exercisers.




References

  1. Bourdeaudhuij, I.D., Sallis, J.F., & Saelens, B.E. (2003). Environmental correlates of physical activity in a sample of Belgian adults. American Journal of Health Promotion, 18(1), 83–92.
  2. Cohen, D.A., Ashwood, J.S., Scott, M.M., Overton, A., Evenson, K.R., Staten, L.K., Porter, D., McKenzie, T.L., & Catellier, D. (2006). Public parks and physical activity among adolescent girls. Pediatrics, 118(5), 1381–1389.
  3. Gordon-Larsen, P., Nelson, M.C., Page, P., & Popkin, B.M. (2006). Inequality in the built environment underlies key health disparities in physical activity and obesity. Pediatrics, 117(2), 417–424.
  4. Gordon, P.M., Zizzi, S.J., & Pauline, J. (2004). Use of a community trail among new and habitual exercises: A preliminary assessment. Preventing Chronic Disease, Public Health Research, Practice and Policy, 1(4).
  5. Humpel, N., Owen, N., & Leslie, E. (2002). Environmental factors associated with adults' participation in physical activity. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 22, 188–199.
  6. Norman, G.J., Nutter, S.K., Ryan, S., Sallis, J., Calfas, K.J., & Patrick, K. (2006). Community design and access to recreational facilities as correlates of adolescent physical activity and body-mass index. Journal of Physical Activity and Health, 3(S1), S118–S128.
  7. Play 'N' Close to Home, St. Petersburg, Florida. (n.d.). From Play Matters: A study of best practices to inform local policy and process in support of children's play. Washington, D.C. http://kaboom.org/docs/documents/pdf/playmatters/Play_Matters_Extended_Case_Studies.pdf. Retrieved November 15, 2010.
  8. Powell, L.M., Chaloupka, F.J., Slater, S.J., Johnston, L.D., & O'Malley, P.M. (2007). The availability of local-area commercial physical activity-related facilities and physical activity among adolescents. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 33, (4S), S292–S300.
  9. Sharing Play Space and Responsibility, Tucson, Arizona. (n.d.). From Play Matters: A study of best practices to inform local policy and process in support of children's play. Washington, D.C. http://kaboom.org/docs/documents/pdf/playmatters/Play_Matters_Extended_Case_Studies.pdf. Retrieved November 15, 2010.Vuori, I., Lankenau, B., & Pratt, M. (2004). Physical activity policy and program development: the experience in Finland. Public Health Reports, 119, 331–345.
  10. Vuori, I., Lankenau, B., & Pratt, M. (2004). Physical activity policy and program development: the experience in Finland. Public Health Reports, 119, 331–345.

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