Lieze Mertens

Lieze Mertens
Ghent University | UGhent · Department of Movement and Sports Sciences

Doctor of Public Health

About

45
Publications
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462
Citations
Introduction

Publications

Publications (45)
Article
Current evidence on the relations between neighbourhood environments and older adults' health-related quality of life (HRQoL) relies mainly on cross-sectional studies. This longitudinal study aimed to examine the relations of neighbourhood socioeconomic status (SES) and objective and perceived physical environmental factors with 3-year changes in p...
Article
Full-text available
Background Many theoretical frameworks have been used in order to understand health behaviors such as physical activity, sufficient sleep, healthy eating habits, etc. In most research studies, determinants within these frameworks are assessed only once and thus are considered as stable over time, which leads to rather ‘static’ health behavior chang...
Article
Full-text available
In this paper, we report on a citizen science pilot project involving adolescents who digitize and assess their daily home-to-school routes in different school neighborhoods in Flanders (Belgium). As part of this pilot project, a web-based platform, called the “Bike Barometer” (“Fietsbarometer” in Dutch) was developed. We introduce the tool in this...
Article
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Background Evidence on associations between environmental factors and accelerometer-derived light-intensity physical activity (LPA) is scarce. The aim of this study was to examine associations between Geographic Information System (GIS)-based neighborhood built environmental factors and accelerometer-derived LPA, and to investigate the moderating e...
Preprint
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Background. Evidence on correlates of accelerometer-derived light-intensity physical activity (LPA) is scarce. The aim of this study was to examine associations between Geographic Information System (GIS)-based neighborhood built environmental factors and accelerometer-derived LPA, and to investigate the moderating effect of age group (adolescents,...
Presentation
Full-text available
The results from our study using an interactive 3D model before environmental changes take place were highlighted at the International Society of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. The aim of this study was to investigate the differences in perceived safety and -appeal related to cycling for transport as well as to search for variables tha...
Presentation
Full-text available
During a 5-minute lightning talk, the first results from our study using an interactive 3D model before environmental changes take place were highlighted at the Active Living Conference. The aim of this study was to investigate the differences in perceived safety and -appeal related to cycling for transport as well as to search for variables that...
Article
Full-text available
In order to develop tailored interventions aiming to encourage active transport among older adults, it is important to gain insights into the modifiable moderators affecting active transport behavior considering the neighborhood in which one lives. Therefore, this study aimed to determine which objective physical environmental factors have an impac...
Article
The aim of the current study was to examine age-related differences in the associations of physical environmental and psychosocial factors with accelerometer-assessed MVPA across three age groups (adolescents, adults, and older adults). Therefore, data from three studies with a comparable study protocol were combined. Results showed that both physi...
Article
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Introduction Cycling has a positive impact on physical, mental and social health, and slows the aging process. However, there is still a large potential to increase the cycling levels in Belgian older adults. In order to promote cycling for transport, safe and attractive street characteristics have previously been investigated by using cross-sectio...
Article
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In order to optimize environmental interventions, the current study aimed to investigate whether there are subgroups with different preferences regarding park characteristics for park visitation and park-based PA among adolescents (12–16 years). Furthermore, we examined whether the identified subgroups differed in socio-demographics, PA behavior, a...
Data
Relative importances of each park characteristic for park-based PA, socio-demographics, PA behavior and park use characteristics for the three subgroups identified by latent class analysis (complete table). a significant difference with subgroup 1; b significant difference with subgroup 2; c significant difference with subgroup 3;* p < 0.05. (PDF)
Data
A detailed overview of the different models for two, three, four and five subgroups is given for park-based PA. (PDF)
Data
Relative importances of each park characteristic for park visitation, socio-demographics, PA behavior and park use characteristics for the three subgroups identified by latent class analysis (complete table). a significant difference with subgroup 1; b significant difference with subgroup 2; c significant difference with subgroup 3;* p < 0.05. (PDF...
Data
A detailed overview of the different models for two, three, four and five subgroups is given for park visitation. (PDF)
Article
To date, no longitudinal studies examined the change in walking and cycling for transport as distinct outcomes over time and investigated the predictors of those changes. Therefore, this present study examined the change in odds of engagement in walking and cycling for transport as distinct outcomes among Belgian older adults over a three-year foll...
Article
Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate which narrative elements of digital game narratives are preferred by the general adolescent population, and to examine associations with gender, socioeconomic status (SES), and gameplay frequency. Further, the study aims to discuss how results can be translated to serious digital games. Materials...
Article
Full-text available
The independent mobility (IM), defined as the freedom of young people to travel without adult supervision, has been related to the physical activity time, the acquisition of personal autonomy, to less intense fear of crime, and to a stronger feeling of being part of their community and other health and social benefits. The aims of this study were t...
Article
Installing cycling infrastructure well-separated from motorized traffic is hypothesized to increase children's transportation cycling. However, in some streets it may not be possible to install such cycling paths (e.g. due to financial or space constraints). The current paper investigates which physical factors could increase parents' perceptions o...
Article
Full-text available
This cross-sectional study aimed to determine which objective built environmental factors, identified using a virtual neighbourhood audit, were associated with cycling for transport in adults living in five urban regions across Europe. The moderating role of age, gender, socio-economic status and country on these associations was also investigated....
Article
This study aimed to obtain qualitative information about physical activity (PA), sedentary behaviors (SB) and their determinants and about recently retired adults' needs regarding PA interventions. Four focus group interviews were organized. The most commonly reported PA types were walking, cycling, swimming and fitness. The most commonly reported...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Micro-environmental factors (specific features within a streetscape), instead of macro-environmental factors (urban planning features), are more feasible to modify in existing neighborhoods and thus more practical to target for environmental interventions. Because it is often not possible to change the whole micro-environment at once,...
Article
Full-text available
Background Increasing cycling for transport can contribute to improve public health among adults. Micro-environmental factors (i.e. small-scaled street-setting features) may play an important role in affecting the street’s appeal to cycle for transport. Understanding about the interplay between individuals and their physical environment is importan...
Article
Objectives: To assess the associations of socio-ecological factors with independent mobility for transportation cycling among 10-to-12-year-old boys and girls. Additionally, we examined whether associations differed across family socio-economic status (SES) and urbanization level. Design: Cross-sectional survey Methods: Parents (n=1286) were recru...
Article
Full-text available
Regular cycling for transport is an important potential contributor to daily physical activity among adults. Characteristics of the physical environment are likely to influence cycling for transport. The current study investigated associations between perceived physical environmental neighbourhood factors and adults' cycling for transport across fi...
Article
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Increasing participation in transportation cycling represents a useful strategy for increasing children's physical activity levels. Knowledge on how to design environments to encourage adoption and maintenance of transportation cycling is limited and relies mainly on observational studies. The current study experimentally investigates the relative...
Article
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: Characteristics of the physical environment can be classified into two broad categories: macro-("raw" urban planning features influenced on a regional level) and micro-(features specifically within a streetscape influenced on a neighborhood level) environmental factors. In urban planning applications, it is more feasible to modify conditions at t...
Article
Many children worldwide fail to meet physical activity recommendations. Promoting active transport and independent mobility is a potential solution for integrating physical activity into children’s daily life. Development of interventions aiming to increase these behaviours requires an understanding of key determinants. Socio-ecological models sugg...
Article
Micro-environmental factors, instead of macro-environmental factors (including walkability, access to shops/services/work, and urbanization), are easier to change in existing neighborhoods and thus more practical to target for environmental interventions. Unfortunately, relationships between transportation cycling and more changeable, micro-environ...
Article
Full-text available
As physical activity levels decrease as children age, sustainable and accessible forms of physical activity are needed from a young age. Transportation cycling is one such physical activity and has been associated with many benefits. The aims of the study were to identify whether manipulating micro-environmental factors (e.g. speed limis, evenness...
Article
Introduction The Intervention Mapping Protocol (IMP) was applied to the design of a serious game against cyberbullying among adolescents (12-14y). Method The IMP comprises 6 predefined steps. A systematic review assessed the cyberbullying problem and associated health risks (Step 1). Surveys and focus groups collected information on behavior and it...
Article
Full-text available
Previous studies have shown convincing evidence for positive relationships between transportation cycling in adults and macro-scale physical environmental factors. In contrast, relationships are less consistent for more changeable, micro-scale environmental factors. The majority of existing studies used observational study designs, which cannot det...

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