Title

Are Perceptions About Worksite Neighborhoods and Policies Associated With Walking?

Abstract

Purpose To examine associations of the built environment surrounding worksites and of work policies with walkingbehaviors.

Design Cross-sectional convenience sample survey.

Setting Workplace.

Subjects Employed adults residing in Montgomery County, Maryland.

Measures Four different step measures taken at or near work as recorded using an accelerometer and a fifth measure indicated self-reported walking from work. Participants reported on eight built environment characteristics surrounding theworksite (e.g., the presence of sidewalks, crosswalks, and pedestrian signals) and on four worksite policies (e.g., the presence of exercise facilities and exercise programs).

Analysis Cross-sectional associations of self-reported built environment characteristics surrounding worksites andworksite policies with walking behavior were examined.

Results Although participants reported worksites exhibiting built environment characteristics that were supportive ofwalking (seven of eight characteristics were reported by >50% of participants), no built environment characteristic wasassociated with walking more than the median number of average weekday steps (p ≥ .05). All four worksite policies wereassociated with walking more than the median number of average weekday steps (p < .05). In addition, a perception of few cul-de-sacs and of the presence of litter, sidewalks, crosswalks, and pedestrian signals surrounding the worksites wasassociated with a higher proportion of participants taking at least one walking trip from work in the past month (p < .05).

Conclusions Locating worksites in walkable environments and implementing worksite policies may favorably influence employee walking. Future studies should consider a prospective design and examine a larger, more diverse employee population and worksite environment to examine these associations.

Publication Date

2009

Journal Title

American Journal of Health Promotion

Publisher

American Journal of Health Promotion and Allen Press Publishing Services.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

10.4278/ajhp.071217134

Document Type

Article