An observational assessment of park-based physical activity in older adults in Nanchang, China

Justin B. Moore, Kristyn Schuller, Angelie Cook, Yuanan Lu, Zhaokang Yuan, Jay E. Maddock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Objectives: Parks are more widely used by older adults in East Asia than in the United States. Parks are an important community asset for healthy aging; yet, little is known about park usage and features among older adults in China. Methods: The Community Park Audit Tool and the System for Observing Play and Recreation (SOPARC) were used to assess park features, PA levels and primary activities among 40,469 older adults in Nanchang, China. Results: None of the 8 parks observed had basketball courts or baseball fields and only one had a playground. Results indicated that about half of older adults were active in parks, with women, cooler temperatures, weekdays, and morning hours being related to higher levels of activity. Conclusions: Lessons from the construction of parks in China may be useful in increasing park use in older adults in western countries. Features such as exercise equipment, water features, and small exercise areas were common where western parks are often designed with features for teens and youth including basketball courts, baseball fields, and playgrounds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1119-1128
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican Journal of Health Behavior
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2019


  • China
  • Older adults
  • Physical activity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Social Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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