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The Effects of Park-Based Interventions on Health: A Systematic Review Protocol


Wallace, Deshira D.; Derose, Kathryn P.; Han, Bing; & Cohen, Deborah A. (2020). The Effects of Park-Based Interventions on Health: A Systematic Review Protocol. Systematic Reviews, 9(1), 135. PMCID: PMC7282130


BACKGROUND: Public parks serve as spaces within neighborhoods for encouraging a variety of physical and mental health-related behaviors. Over the past decade, there have been a number of interventions conducted in public parks, often aimed at improving an aspect of mental or physical health. A common type of park-based interventions is aimed at increasing physical activity among adults and children.
METHODS: We will conduct a systematic review of peer-reviewed articles on the effects of park-based interventions on physical and mental health outcomes of adults and youth (children and adolescents). An electronic search will be conducted in four electronic databases: Web of Science, PubMed/MEDLINE, Cochrane Library, and Scopus. Manual hand-searching of reference lists from studies identified as relevant by experts and of systematic reviews resulting from the search strategy will be conducted to further identify articles of interest. Inclusion criteria are peer-reviewed, quantitative studies, studies detailing an intervention conducted in a park setting, which was at the person-level or place-level, and studies published in English or Spanish. A three-stage approach will be used to screen title and abstracts and full-text articles against the inclusion and exclusion criteria and, lastly, extract data from eligible studies. Study quality will be assessed by the Cochrane Risk of Bias and the Community Guide's Guide to Community Preventive Services tools. Extracted data will be summarized narratively and meta-analysis will be conducted, if appropriate.
DISCUSSION: We aim to find relevant studies proving evidence for park-based intervention studies and their effects on health-related outcomes for youth and adults. The evidence obtained from the included studies will help guide future studies on park-based interventions. The study results will be submitted to a peer-reviewed journal for electronic dissemination.


Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published


Journal Title

Systematic Reviews


Wallace, Deshira D.
Derose, Kathryn P.
Han, Bing
Cohen, Deborah A.