Opportunities, barriers and constraints to physical activity in rural Queensland, Australia

Article


Eley, Robert, Bush, Robert and Brown, Wendy. 2014. "Opportunities, barriers and constraints to physical activity in rural Queensland, Australia." Journal of Physical Activity and Health. 11 (1), pp. 68-75. https://doi.org/10.1123/jpah.2011-0312
Article Title

Opportunities, barriers and constraints to physical activity in rural Queensland, Australia

ERA Journal ID9773
Article CategoryArticle
AuthorsEley, Robert (Author), Bush, Robert (Author) and Brown, Wendy (Author)
Journal TitleJournal of Physical Activity and Health
Journal Citation11 (1), pp. 68-75
Number of Pages8
Year2014
PublisherHuman Kinetics Publishers
Place of PublicationChampaign, IL. United States
ISSN1543-3080
1543-5474
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1123/jpah.2011-0312
Web Address (URL)http://journals.humankinetics.com/jpah-back-issues/jpah-volume-11-issue-1-january/opportunities-barriers-and-constraints-to-physical-activity-in-rural-queensland-australia
Abstract

Background: Interventions addressing chronic disease through physical activity are hampered by the low evidence base from rural areas. The purpose of the study was to provide information which may contribute to the development of future policy and strategy applicable to rural Queensland.
Methods: Six diverse rural shires were chosen. A mixed method design included more than 100 interviews with community representatives; surveys to 3000 community members; audits of facilities, amenities, and other relevant resources in each shire; and by detailed observation during repeated site visits.
Results: Half the respondents failed to meet Australian physical activity guidelines and one in five reported no activity. Queensland's rural communities offer good access to a wide variety of structured and non-structured activities. Some barriers to physical activity (e.g. family commitments) are similar to those reported from urban areas: however others including climate, culture of exercise and community leadership are unique to the rural environment.
Conclusions: Unique characteristics of rural environments and populations affect engagement in physical activity. Promotion of healthy lifestyle in rural environments need to be informed by local context and not merely extrapolated from urban situations. Attention must be paid to specific local circumstances which may affect implementation, adoption and participation.

Keywordschronic disease; community-based research; exercise
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020420702. Exercise physiology
441003. Rural sociology
420305. Health and community services
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Byline AffiliationsCentre for Rural and Remote Area Health
University of Queensland
Institution of OriginUniversity of Southern Queensland
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