Parental fear: a barrier to the independent mobility of children

Children who are able to play and travel without an adult and those who walk or cycle to school are more likely to meet Australian physical activity guidelines, according to findings from research that investigated the role that parental fear plays in shaping children’s independence and physical activity, the first of its kind in Australia.

The three-year study (2012 to 2015) was initiated and funded by VicHealth and commissioned to La Trobe University and the Parenting Research Centre addressed a gap in evidence, if parental fear is a barrier to children’s independence and getting enough physical activity. Just one in five Australian children is physically active for the recommended one hour each day. It included a survey of more than 2000 parents of children aged nine to 15 from across Victoria.

Read the Research



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Nature Play WA acknowledges the Whadjuk people of the Noongar Nation, as the custodians of the land where our team lives and works. We also acknowledge the traditional custodians throughout Western Australia and recognise the continuing connection of Indigenous people to their land, waters, sky, culture and community. We pay our respect to all Indigenous people of this land; ancestors, elders and young ones.