Prevalence and patterns of active commuting according to socio-demographic factors in the Chilean population

Heather Waddell, Fernando Rodríguez-Rodríguez, Alex Garrido-Mendez, Ximena Diaz-Martinez, Felipe Poblete-Valderrama, Fanny Petermann-Rocha, Carlos Celis-Morales

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Introduction: The objective of this study was to investigate levels of self-reported active commuting by socio-demographics factors in Chile. Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted in 5,157 participants (women: 59.3%, age range 15–101 years) from the Chilean National Health Survey (CNHS) 2009–2010. The Global Physical Activity Questionnaire (GPAQ v2) was utilised to measure frequency and time spent in active commuting (walking or cycling). In addition, age, sex, education, place of residence, income and occupation were used as socio-demographics factors of interest. Results: 31.9% [95% Confidence Interval (CI): 29.7; 34.2] of the population reported not doing any form of active commuting, this prevalence was higher in women than men (34.0% vs. 29.7%), in older (≥65y) than younger individuals (≤24y) (44.1% vs. 24.4%), in individuals with lower education compared to higher education (38.4% vs. 28.2) and in retired individuals than in those who were employed (46.0% vs. 31.2%). Being a non-active commuter was associated with a higher prevalence of physical inactivity (OR: 11.1 [95% CI: 8.27; 14.8], p < 0.0001). Similar findings were observed when analyses were stratified by socio-demographics factors. Conclusions: Our findings show that prevalence and levels of active commuting differ by socio-demographic factors. In addition, our results provide evidence that commuting physical activity is an important domain that contribute to achieving the physical activity guidelines. Individuals who do not engage in active commuting presented a higher prevalence of physical inactivity.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100615
JournalJournal of Transport and Health
StatePublished - Sep 2019


  • Active commuting
  • Active travel
  • Cycling
  • Physical activity
  • Sociodemographic
  • Walking


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