Revista de Salud Pública
Print version ISSN 0124-0064
HERNANDEZ, Alexandra; GOMEZ, Luis F and PARRA, Diana C. The relevance of urban environments and physical activity in older adults for Latin-America. Rev. salud pública [online]. 2010, vol.12, n.2, pp.327-335. ISSN 0124-0064. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0124-00642010000200016.
Aging in Latin-America has been characterised by its rapid pace which, in turn, has been accompanied by growing urbanisation and globalisation. These processes have been linked to the prevalence of physical inactivity thereby contributing to the appearance of chronic diseases, these being the primary cause of mortality in the region. The influence of public urban environment intervention policy on physical activity has been emphasised recently. This evidence comes mainly from studies conducted in the USA and Australia. However, this topic has scarcely been studied in Latin-America which has particular characteristics regarding aging and urban development. Cities, such as Curitiba and Bogota, have undergone significant urban changes which may be linked to physical activity and the quality of life, especially in older adults. Considering the particularities of urban development in Latin-America, it is thus concluded that multidisciplinary studies should be carried out thereby leading to better understanding of the links between urban environments and physical activity in older adults.
Keywords : Urban environment; physical activity; aging; older adult; disability.