Perceptions of the physical environment, stage of change for physical activity, and walking among Australian adults

Res Q Exerc Sport. 2002 Jun;73(2):146-55. doi: 10.1080/02701367.2002.10609003.


Data for this study were from a population survey of 1,200 adults ages 40-60 years, sampled from the Illawarra region of New South Wales. Questionnaire items on perceptions of the environment were factor analyzed into: Aesthetic Environment and Practical Environment. For both factors, those in the Contemplation stage had more negative views of the environment than those in Maintenance. Those who walked for 0-20 min/week held more negative perceptions of their environment than those who walked for 21-120 min/week and those who walked for > 120 min/week. The health promotion implications of these findings are that environments perceived as attractive and as providing convenient access to services and facilities may influence motivational readiness for physical activity and time spent walking.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Attitude*
  • Environment*
  • Factor Analysis, Statistical
  • Female
  • Health Behavior*
  • Humans
  • Life Style
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • New South Wales
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Walking*