New research confirms: Walking helps our society to age well!
Professor Ester Cerin, plenary speaker at Walk21 Hong Kong, and co-authors have recently published a new study "The neighbourhood physical environment and active travel in older adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis". The authors reviewed the literature on neighbourhood physical environmental correlations of active transport in older adults and applied a novel meta-analytic approach to statistically quantify evidence for associations between environmental qualities and active transport. The study identified positive associations between total walking for transport and urban environmental characteristics such as residential density, walkability, street connectivity, overall access services, land use mix, pedestrian-friendly features as well as access to several types of destinations. They conclude that a specific type of neighbourhood physical environment can raise levels of active transport amongst older adults. We add that this can only mean that older adults will then be healthier (and happier?!). In other words: building walkable cities will help to keep our ageing society healthy! We are excited about such new studies as the topic of an ageing society will be an important discussion for the upcoming Walk21 conference in Calgary.