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Journal Article


Xu H, Wen LM, Hardy LL, Rissel C. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017; 14(9): e14091082.


Prevention Research Collaboration, Sydney School of Public Health, University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW 2006, Australia.


(Copyright © 2017, MDPI: Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute)






BACKGROUND: This study aims to investigate whether mothers' perceived neighbourhood environment is associated with outdoor playtime of 2- to 3.5-year-old children.

METHODS: Cross-sectional analyses were conducted using data from the Healthy Beginnings Trial (HBT). Data on children's outdoor playtime and mothers' perceived neighbourhood environment were collected through face-to-face interviews with mothers when their children were 2 and 3.5 years old. Walk score was obtained from a publicly available website and population density data were obtained from Australian Census data. Multiple logistic regression models were built to investigate these associations.

RESULTS: A total of 497 and 415 mother-child dyads were retained at 2 years and 3.5 years. After adjusting for intervention group allocation and other confounding factors, at 2 years, mothers' perceptions that 'the neighbourhood is a good place to bring up children', 'it is safe to play outside during the day', and 'there are good parks or playgrounds in neighbourhood' were positively associated with children's outdoor playtime. At 3.5 years, living in a free-standing house was associated with more children's outdoor playtime.

CONCLUSIONS: Children may benefit from living in a neighbourhood that supports active lifestyle. Improving social and physical environments in neighbourhoods could be an important strategy for improving young children's physical activity.

Language: en


neighbourhood environment; outdoor play; perceptions; physical activity; young children


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