Individual Characteristics Associated with Active Travel in Low and High Income Groups in the UK

Brian A. Lawlor, John A. Hunter, Deepti Adlakha, F Kee, Mark Tully

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2 Citations (Scopus)
51 Downloads (Pure)


Active travel (AT) has gained increasing attention as a way of addressing low levels of physical activity. However, little is known regarding the relationship between income and AT. The aim of this study was to investigate characteristics associated with undertaking AT in an adult population and by low- and high-income groups. Data collected from the Physical Activity and the Rejuvenation of Connswater (PARC) study in 2017 were used. Participants were categorised into socio-economic groups according to their weekly household income, and were categorised as participating in ‘no’ AT or ‘some’ AT and ‘sufficient’ AT. Multivariable logistic regression explored characteristics associated with AT in the full cohort, and the low- and high-income groups separately. Variables associated with AT in the low-income group were body mass index (BMI), physical activity self-efficacy, marital status, long term illness, difficulty walking and housing tenure. For the high-income group, BMI, marital status, housing tenure and education were associated with AT. For both income groups, there were consistent positive associations with the action/maintenance phase of the stage of change model across all AT categories. The findings suggest that population sub-groups may benefit from targeted initiatives to support engagement in AT and prevent further widening of inequalities.
Original languageEnglish
Article number10360
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 1 Oct 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Funding: This research was supported by funding from the National Prevention Research Initiative (NPRI) (grant number G0802045) and their funding partners (Alzheimer’s Research Trust; Alzheimer’s Society; Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council; British Heart Foundation; Cancer Research UK; Chief Scientist Office, Scottish Government Health Directorate; Department of Health; Diabetes UK; Economic and Social Research Council; Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council; Health and Social Care Research and Development Division of the Public Health Agency (HSC R&D Division); Medical Research Council; The Stroke Association; Welsh Assembly Government; and World Cancer Research Fund ( (accessed on 29 June 2021).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.


  • active travel
  • income
  • walking
  • cycling
  • Body Mass Index
  • Travel
  • Poverty
  • Humans
  • Income
  • Adult
  • United Kingdom
  • Cycling
  • Walking
  • Active travel


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