Where can I find something to give me a summary on the relationship of parks and health? This is a question we here quite a bit. One good source that gives such an overview is an article in the Research Digest of the President’s Council on Physical Fitness from March, 2008. Some of the questions answered are:
- What research is available on parks, recreation and physical activity?
- What is the evidence that parks promote physical activity?
- How much physical activity occurs within parks? and
- What park characteristics/attributes shape physical activity?
What we like about this article is that it goes beyond the mere statment that parks can be beneficial and into what actually makes a park more health-promoting, such as evidence showing that park s with lighting, fountains and shaded areas have been associated with more physical activity. The report can be found in pdf here.