Parental assessment of benefits and of dangers determines children’s permission to play outdoors

Jidovtseff, B., Pirard, F., Martin, A. , McCrorie, P. , Vidal, A. and Pools, E. (2022) Parental assessment of benefits and of dangers determines children’s permission to play outdoors. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 19(18), 11467. (doi: 10.3390/ijerph191811467) (PMID:36141739) (PMCID:PMC9517668)

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Abstract

During the early years, children’s outdoor play is dependent on parental supervision. Parents’ perceptions are likely to influence what the child is permitted to do. To better understand the involved mechanisms in parents’ decision making in such contexts, an online photo-based questionnaire was administered. The tool investigates, in different situations, parents and their children’s experience, parents’ perceptions, and permission to play. A total of 417 parents of children aged from 1.5 and 6.0 completed the questionnaire. Results showed that parents, overall, have a positive attitude towards outdoor play. Main concerns were about risk of injury but in most cases, perceived benefits outweigh perceived dangers. “Sawing wood” was the only situation with a negative benefits/dangers balance. A linear regression analysis revealed that permission to play outdoors is based on parental assessment of benefits and dangers. Perceived benefits appeared to have more influence on parental decision than perceived dangers, while perceived competence had only a small influence. The results also showed that parents’ childhood experience of outdoor play was an important determinant for adults’ perceptions, perhaps demonstrating intergenerational concerns, as outdoor play is in decline. To overcome a negative intergenerational effect on children’s outdoor play, interventions and communication should focus on associated benefits.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Martin, Dr Anne and Mccrorie, Dr Paul
Creator Roles:
Martin, A.Writing – review and editing
McCrorie, P.Writing – review and editing
Authors: Jidovtseff, B., Pirard, F., Martin, A., McCrorie, P., Vidal, A., and Pools, E.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Health & Wellbeing > MRC/CSO SPHSU
Journal Name:International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Publisher:MDPI
ISSN:1661-7827
ISSN (Online):1660-4601
Published Online:12 September 2022
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2022 The Authors
First Published:First published in International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 19(18): 11467
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
727661Complexity in Health ImprovementLaurence MooreMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_UU_12017/14HW - MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit
3048231Complexity in healthSharon SimpsonMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_UU_00022/1HW - MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit
727661Complexity in Health ImprovementLaurence MooreOffice of the Chief Scientific Adviser (CSO)SPHSU14HW - MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit
3048231Complexity in healthSharon SimpsonOffice of the Chief Scientific Adviser (CSO)SPHSU16HW - MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit
727621Neighbourhoods and CommunitiesAnne EllawayMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_UU_12017/10HW - MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit
3048231Places and healthRich MitchellMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_UU_00022/4HW - MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit
727621Neighbourhoods and CommunitiesAnne EllawayOffice of the Chief Scientific Adviser (CSO)SPHSU10HW - MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit
3048231Places and healthRich MitchellOffice of the Chief Scientific Adviser (CSO)SPHSU19HW - MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit