1 Introduction</h5> Children's freedom to move about and play within their local neighbourhoods brings with it a raft of developmental, health and social benefits ( Badland and Oliver, 2012 ). Numerous studies suggest that allowing children the freedom to roam the neighbourhood without adult supervision (i.e., independent mobility) can increase physical activity levels ( Davis and Jones, 1996; Guldberg, 2009; Page et al., 2009, 2010; Schoeppe et al., 2013 ), facilitate the development of motor skills and cognitive development ( Kytta, 2004; Rissotto and Tonucci, 2002 ), help children acquire a sense of identity ( Hillman et al., 1990; Malone, 2007; Rissotto and Giuliana, 2006 ), and enhance spatial awareness ( Herman et al., 1987; Joshi et al., 1999; O’Brien et al., 2000; Rissotto and Tonucci, 2002 ). Moreover, independent mobility can augment social interactions with local children and adults ( Prezza and Pacilli, 2007; Spilsbury, 2005; Tranter and Whitelegg, 1994 ), and help build confidence, self-esteem and social skills ( Hillman et al., 1990; Joshi et al., 1999 ).</P>Despite the benefits of independent mobility for child health and wellbeing, it is widely acknowledged that independent mobility has declined over recent generations in many developed countries ( Fyhri
Health And Place – Elsevier
Published: Mar 1, 2014
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