Subgroups of Adolescents Differing in Physical and Social Environmental Preferences towards Cycling for Transport: A Latent Class Analysis

In order to be able to tailor environmental interventions to adolescents at risk for low levels of physical activity, the aim of the present study is to identify subgroups of adolescents with different physical and social environmental preferences towards cycling for transport and to determine differences in individual characteristics between these subgroups. In this experimental study, 882 adolescents (12–16 years) completed 15 choice tasks with manipulated photographs. Participants chose between two possible routes to cycle to a friend's house which differed in seven physical micro-environmental factors, cycling distance and co-participation in cycling (i.e. cycling alone or with a friend). Latent class analysis was performed. Data were collected from March till October 2016 across Flanders (Belgium). Three subgroups could be identified. Subgroup 1 attached most importance to separation of the cycle path and safety-related aspects. Subgroup 2 attached most importance to being able to cycle together with a friend and had the highest percentage of regular cyclists. In subgroup 3, the importance of cycling distance clearly stood out. This subgroup included the lowest percentage of regular cyclists. Results showed that in order to stimulate the least regular cyclists, and thus also the subgroup most at risk for low levels of active transport, cycling distances should be as short as possible. In general, results showed that providing well-separated cycle paths which enable adolescents to cycle side by side and introducing shortcuts for cyclists may encourage different subgroups of adolescents to cycle for transport without discouraging other subgroups.


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  • Accession Number: 01671932
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: May 23 2018 3:14PM