Urban Park Systems: A Conceptual Model of How Low Accessibility to Parks Can Create Obesity Open Access

Brantley, Ian (2012)

Permanent URL: https://etd.library.emory.edu/concern/etds/4q77fs13b?locale=en
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Abstract


Abstract
Urban Park Systems:
A Conceptual Model of How Low Accessibility to Parks Can Create Obesity
The characteristics of urban parks function as influential factors in physical activity
behavior by place (neighborhoods) and by person (park user). Examining the
relationship of the neighborhood and park user is instrumental to identifying
barriers to increased physical activity. A conceptual model is proposed using two
key dimensions of access that are important to understanding parks in the
neighborhood environment: availability and proximity. Both dimensions are shown
to be associated with increased park use and physical activity levels. The
prevalence of people participating in some kind of outdoor recreation in the U.S.
continues to be high. Unfortunately, an overwhelming portion of park users exhibit
sedentary behaviors when in parks. Disparities in health related resources, such as
parks, among urban populations are documented and show spatial clustering of
resources by race and ethnicity. Accessibility of parks and park services predict
park visitation, the first requirement of increased park‐based physical activity.
Building on the evolution of park design, structural park characteristics within
parks are integral to increasing physical activity levels among park users.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Health and Physical Activity

1

Obesity in America

2

What is Physical Activity?

7

Increased Sedentary Lifestyles

9

Costs of Disease

15

Chapter 2 Healthy Places, Healthy People

17

Neighborhoods and Health

19

Contextual Influences on Obesity

22

Chapter 3 Urban Parks

26

A Brief History of Urban Parks

30

Urban Parks Today

40

Chapter 4 Urban Parks and Physical Activity

43

Parks and Active Living

45

Accessibility

46

Characteristics of Park Users

56

Disparities in Park Access by Race and Income

58

Conclusion

63

References

67

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