Physical inactivity is among the most important and prevalent risk factors of many major diseases. Although the health benefits of regular exercise and a physically active lifestyle are well known, many people are still not active. Understanding why some population groups are physically active and others are not is therefore of key importance in developing strategies to improve population health. Physical activity is often believed to be influenced by both environmental factors, such as the neighbourhood lay-out, and individual factors, like personal beliefs about physical activity. Many theories also suggest that these factors interplay so that the role of individual factors for physical activity may depend on the environmental context. However, little is known about this interplay. In this thesis, associations of individual and neighbourhood factors with physical activity are studied, with a particular focus on the interplay between these individual and neighbourhood factors. The results of this study provide new insights for public health researchers, policymakers, urban planners, and everyone else who is interested in physical activity and the interplay between individual and neighbourhood factors.

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All funding bodies are gratefully acknowledged (see individual chapters). This thesis was printed with financial support of the Department of Public Health of the Erasmus MC and Erasmus University Rotterdam.
A. Burdorf (Alex)
Erasmus University Rotterdam
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Beenackers, M. (2013, April 12). Physical Activity : The interplay between individual and neighbourhood factors. Retrieved from