Compliance potential mapping: a tool to assess potential contributions of walking towards physical activity guidelines
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BACKGROUND: Walking for transport is increasingly considered an important component for meeting physical activity guidelines. This is true for individuals of all ages, and particularly important for seniors, for whom other physical activities may not be recommended. In order to evaluate the potential contributions of walking to physical activity, in this paper the concept of Compliance Potential Mapping is introduced. The concept is illustrated using seniors as a case study. METHODS: Based on estimates of walking trip distance and frequency, estimates of expected total daily walking distance are obtained. These estimates are converted to weekly walking minutes, which are in turn compared to recommended physical activity guidelines for seniors. Once estimates of travel behavior are available, the approach is straightforward and based on relatively simple map algebra operations. RESULTS: Compliance Potential Mapping as a tool to assess the potential contributions of walking towards physical activity is demonstrated using data from Montreal's 2008 travel survey. The results indicate that the central parts of Montreal Island display higher potential for compliance with physical activity guidelines, but with variations according to age, income, occupation, possession of driver's license and vehicle, and neighborhood and accessibility parameters. CONCLUSIONS: Compliance Potential Maps offer valuable information for public health and transportation planning and policy analysis.
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