Background: During the past decade many studies have endeavored to evaluate the relationships between environmental attributes and physical activity, but there is limited data on this subject in Taiwan. This is the first study to investigate both objective and subjective environments in relation to different levels of physical activity in adults in Tainan, Taiwan. Methods: A 2-stage survey examining relationships between physical and social environments and physical activity was designed. It was administered to a sample including 231 community directors and 804 randomly selected residents. Community audits and telephone interviews were used as the objective and subjective measures in the study, respectively. Results: No correlation was found between the objective and the subjective measures of physical environments. Only the subjective measures were significantly related to city residents' physical activities. Perceived physical facility was found to be correlated with engagement in physical activity, whereas organizational participation was associated with the regularity of physical activity. Of the 4 types of leisure activity examined in this study, dancing and aerobic activities are more likely to be engaged in regularly. Conclusions: Factors associated with the regularity of physical activity are not the same as factors associated with engagement in physical activity.
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