Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Thesis


Epidemiology and Biostatistics


The Norman J. Arnold School of Public Health

First Advisor

Swann A. Adams


More than sixty-five percent of people in the U.S. are considered overweight or obese. African-Americans in the U.S. have a higher risk of obesity than any other racial group. One way to reduce this statistic is physical activity. Recreational green spaces (parks) can serve as an avenue to complete the 150 min/wk of recommended physical activity for adults by the ACSM. Data from SISTAS and HEALS interventions, that recruited overweight/obese African-Americans from Columbia and Florence, SC, was used to assess the association of recreational green space (parks) around a residence and physical activity. Physical activity measures of RAPA questionnaire (self-report), SenseWear® armband data (objective), and objective inflammatory biomarkers of interleukin-6 (IL-6) and CReactive protein (CRP) were utilized. Few, statistically significant, inverse associations were seen between amount of parks around a residence and physical activity for both the RAPA questionnaire and energy expenditure, evaluated by armband data. Positive associations were observed for inflammatory biomarkers at 0.75 (CRP: OR= 2.72; IL-6: OR= 2.532) and 5.0 (CRP: OR=1.811; IL-6: OR= 1.913) mile buffer regions for participant neighborhoods. No linear trends were observed with different buffer regions and more/less physical activity in any measurement. More research is needed to decipher the association that recreational green space (parks) have on physical activity in adult neighborhoods.


© 2016, Amanda Sue Thomas

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