If boosting your activity level is a goal this year, you may be wondering if it’s possible depending on where you live.
According to a new ranking from WalletHub, some cities are better for keeping residents moving than others.
The personal finance website used 36 key indicators of an active lifestyle to compare the 100 largest U.S. cities.
“Our data set ranges from the average monthly fitness-club fee to bike score to the share of physically inactive adults. We also considered factors that might negatively impact people’s ability to stay active this year, like the prevalence of COVID-19,” the website said.
The methodology further stated that the cities were compared based on the key dimensions of “Budget & Participation” and “Sports & Outdoors.”
“Budget & Participation” took into account factors such as the average fitness club fee and Google search interest in “At Home Sports Equipment.” Meanwhile, “Sports & Outdoors” included bike rental facilities per capita and walk score.
The aforementioned 36 indicators were rated on a 100-point scale. A grade of 100 signifies the most favorable conditions for a physically active population.
“Finally, we determined each city’s weighted average across all metrics to calculate its Active Lifestyle Score and used the resulting scores to rank-order our sample. In determining our sample, we considered only the city proper in each case, excluding cities in the surrounding metro area,” WalletHub said.
It’s worth noting that no city scored a 100 for an active lifestyle. The No. 1 city, Honolulu, scored 67.70 while the worst-performing city was North Las Vegas, which scored 26.12.
However, Atlanta managed to land in the top 20, coming in at No. 17 with a score of 50.60. The Peach State’s capital city also came in at No. 9 for “Budget & Participation” and No. 19 for “Sports & Outdoors.”
“An active lifestyle does not have to cost any money. Social media collaborations and support are generally free – anyone can join support groups to improve accountability,” said Susan A. Saliba, a professor in the department of kinesiology, Curry School of Education at the University of Virginia.
For people who wish to maintain an active lifestyle, Los Angeles-based Steven Loy, Ph.D., a professor of kinesiology at California State University, Northridge, recommends joining the city’s local free park-based program called 3 WINS Fitness “and join a community of like-minded individuals intent on maintaining and improving their health and quality of life.”
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