Associations of Socio-demographic, Family, and Neighborhood Factors with Physical Activity-Related Parenting Practices Among Hong Kong Preschoolers’ Parents
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Objectives Regular engagement in physical activity (PA) has numerous health benefits in young children. Young children’s parents can influence their children’s PA behavior through different PA-related parenting practices. This cross-sectional study examined the independent contributions of socio-demographic, family/home and parent-perceived neighborhood environmental characteristics explaining PA-related parenting practices encouraging or discouraging PA among Hong Kong preschool-aged children (3–5 years-old). Methods Hong Kong Chinese preschoolers’ parents were recruited from pre-selected kindergartens and Maternal and Child Health Centers located in areas stratified by residential density and socio-economic status. They self-completed socio-demographic, family/home and perceived neighborhood characteristics and PA-related parenting practices questionnaires. Generalized linear models were used to examine associations of socio-demographic, family/home and neighborhood variables with PA-related parenting practices. Results Socio-demographic and family/home characteristics were significantly correlated with parenting practices encouraging and discouraging PA. Parent-perceived neighborhood characteristics were significantly correlated with parenting practices discouraging PA only. Conclusions for Practice This study identified correlates of PA-related parenting practices among parents of Hong Kong Chinese preschoolers. The findings suggest future PA-promoting interventions among Chinese preschoolers via the promotion of parenting practices encouraging children’s PA should consider multiple factors, including family relationships and childcare sharing, promotion of PA and its benefits among parents, and neighborhood social cohesion, traffic safety and safety from crime.
KeywordsChinese Parenting practices Neighborhood environment Family Socio-demographics
This study was supported by grant # 201001159011—Seed Funding Program for Basic Research (The University of Hong Kong) awarded to Ester Cerin. Ester Cerin is supported by an Australian Research Council Future Fellowship (FT#140100085). The authors would like to thank all primary caregivers for their participation. We also thank the staff of all kindergartens and Maternal and Child Health Centers of the Department of Health of Hong Kong for their coordination and cooperation which made it possible to successfully complete this project.
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