2016 - Research

Does Parents' Social Cohesion Influence Their Perception of Neighborhood Safety and Their Children's Active Commuting To and From School?

KEY TAKEAWAYS: This study found that neighborhood social environments have a positive influence on children’s active commuting to and from school for boys, and an inverse significant association for girls. 

RESULTS:

  • The study found a significant positive association between levels of perceived social cohesion and children’s active commuting to and from school for boys, and a significant negative association for girls.
  • Parents of boys living in neighborhoods with medium to high social cohesion were more likely to perceive their neighborhood as safe compared with parents living in neighborhoods with low social cohesion.
  • Perceived neighborhood safety for walking and biking was associated with greater active commuting to and from school among boys.

METHODS:

  • This is a cross-sectional study examining baseline data from the Texas Childhood Obesity Prevention Policy Evaluation project. Participants had a mean age of 9.6 (0.6) years, and 50 percent were girls. Mixed effects logistic regression models were used to assess gender-stratified associations between parent’s perceived social cohesion and children’s ACS and their perception of neighborhood safety.

Salahuddin, M., Nehme, E., Ranjit, N., Kim, Young-Jae, Oluyomi, A., Dowdy, D. Lee, C., Ory, M., and Deanna Hoelscher (2016). Does Parent’s Social Cohesion Influence Their Perception of Neighborhood Safety and Their Children’s Active Commuting to and From School? (2016). Journal of Physical Activity and Health, 13: 1301-1309.