Background: The number of sports facilities, sports clubs, or city parks in a residential neighbourhood may affect the likelihood that people participate in sports and their preferences for a certain sports location. This study aimed to assess whether objective physical and socio-spatial neighbourhood characteristics relate to sports participation and preferences for sports locations. Methods: Data from Dutch adults (N = 1201) on sports participation, their most-used sports location, and socio-demographic characteristics were collected using an online survey. Objective land-use data and the number of sports facilities were gathered for each participant using a 2000-m buffer around their home locations, whereas socio-spatial neighbourhood characteristics (i.e., density, socio-economic status, and safety) were determined at the neighbourhood level. A discrete choice-modelling framework (multinomial probit model) was used to model the associations between neighbourhood characteristics and sports participation and location. Results: Higher proportions of green space, blue space, and the number of sports facilities were positively associated with sports participation in public space, at sports clubs, and at other sports facilities. Higher degrees of urbanization were negatively associated with sports participation at public spaces, sports clubs, and other sports facilities. Conclusions: Those with more green space, blue space or sports facilities in their residential neighbourhood were more likely to participate in sports, but these factors did not affect their preference for a certain sports location. Longitudinal study designs are necessary to assess causality: do active people choose to live in sports-facilitating neighbourhoods, or do neighbourhood characteristics affect sports participation?
Deelen, I., Jansen, M., Dogterom, N. J., Kamphuis, C. B. M., & Ettema, D. (2017). Do objective neighbourhood characteristics relate to residents’ preferences for certain sports locations? A cross-sectional study using a discrete choice modelling approach. BMC Public Health, 17(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-017-4949-5