Infoscience

Poster

Looking for “frequent walkers” among the resident population of Switzerland

Walking is the focus of increasing interest. However, the phenomenon of people who spontaneously walk great distances has not been investigated. Here, we analyse quantitative data from the Swiss transport micro-census (MRMT2010), containing information from 62’868 individuals interviewed by telephone throughout 2010, in a representative stratified sample covering all residents of Switzerland, who were asked about their transport activity on a random reference day. On the reference day, 11.5% of the sample stayed at home and people walking less than 2 km or 2-5 km represented 26.6% and 22.3%, respectively. The proportion of people walking 5-20 km on the reference day represented 12.8% of the sample. The average age of these "great walkers" (potential frequent walkers) was 43.4 years (SD 20.3) and around 53% of them were women. Great walkers tended to be more educated: 30% had reached ISCED 5 or higher (University or equivalent), compared to 18-26% in other groups. Results were significant at the p < 0.05 level (chi-squared test). Body-mass index (BMI) ranged from 22.4 for non-walking cyclists to 23.1-23.5 for the three categories of walkers, up to 24.0 for people who stayed at home and 24.4 for non-walking drivers. Differences between groups were significant (t-test, p<0.05).

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