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Prev Med. 2012 Sep;55(3):212-4. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2012.06.023. Epub 2012 Jul 5.

Longitudinal and cross-sectional changes in active commuting to school among Brazilian schoolchildren.

Author information

1
Graduate Physical Education Program, Federal University of Santa Catarina, University Campus - Trindade, Florianopolis, Brazil. filipefcosta_1@hotmail.com

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

The objective of the study is to evaluate cross-sectional and longitudinal changes in children's commuting to school in a representative sample of a Brazilian city.

METHODS:

Two school-based studies were carried out in 2002 (n=2936; 7-10 years old) and 2007 (n=1232; 7-15 years old) in Florianopolis, Brazil. Cross-sectional data were collected from children aged 7 to 10 years in 2002 and 2007. Longitudinal analyses were performed with data from 733 children participating in both surveys. Children self-reported their mode of transportation to school using a validated illustrated questionnaire. Changes were tested with chi square statistics and McNemar's test.

RESULTS:

Cross-sectional data showed a 17% decline in active commuting; a decrease from 49% in 2002 to 41% in 2007. On the other hand, active commuting among the 733 children increased as they entered adolescence 5 years later, rising from 40% to 49%.

CONCLUSION:

Active commuting to school decreased in Brazilian children aged 7-10 years over a five year period; whereas, it increased among children entering adolescence. Policies should focus on safety and environmental determinants to increase active commuting.

PMID:
22772080
DOI:
10.1016/j.ypmed.2012.06.023
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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