Correlates of Commuter Cycling in Three Norwegian Counties
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2019, 16(22), 4372. 10.3390/ijerph16224372
Globally, there is an increasing challenge of physical inactivity and associated diseases. Commuter cycling is an everyday physical activity with great potential to increase the health status in a population. We aimed to evaluate the association of self-reported factors and objectively measured environmental factors in residence and along commuter routes and assessed the probability of being a commuter cyclist in Norway. Our study included respondents from a web-based survey in three Norwegian counties and we used a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to evaluate the natural and built environment. Of the 1196 respondents, 488 were classified as commuter cyclists. Self-reported factors as having access to an e-bike (OR 5.99 [CI: 3.71–9.69]), being physically active (OR 2.56 [CI: 1.42–4.60]) and good self-rated health (OR 1.92 [CI: 1.20–3.07]) increased the probability of being a cyclist, while being overweight or obese (OR 0.71 [CI: 0.54–0.94]) reduced the probability. Environmental factors, such as high population density (OR 1.49 [CI: 1.05–2.12]) increased the probability, while higher slope (trend p = 0.020), total elevation along commuter route (trend p = 0.001), and >5 km between home and work (OR 0.17 [CI: 0.13–0.23]) decreased the probability of being a cyclist. In the present study, both self-reported and environmental factors were associated with being a cyclist. With the exception of being in good health, the characteristics of cyclists in Norway, a country with a low share of cyclists, seem to be similar to countries with a higher share of cyclists. With better knowledge about characteristics of cyclists, we may design better interventions and campaigns to increase the share of commuter cyclists.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.