Congratulations to HALO Research Manager Dr. Louise de Lannoy and coauthors on the recent publication of their paper “Scoping review of children’s and youth’s outdoor play publications in Canada” just published in Health Promotion and Chronic Disease Prevention. Citation details and a summary of the paper are below. 

de Lannoy L, Barbeau K, Seguin N, Tremblay MS. Scoping review of children’s and youth’s outdoor play publications in Canada. Heal Promot Chronic Dis Prev Canada. 2023;43(1):1-13. doi:10.24095/HPCDP.43.1.01


Introduction: Since 2015, interest in the benefits of outdoor play for physical, emotional, social and environmental health, well-being and development has been growing in Canada and elsewhere.

Methods: This scoping review aims to answer the question, “How, and in what context, is children’s and youth’s outdoor play being studied in Canada?” Included were studies of any type on outdoor play published after September 2015 in English or French by authors from Canadian institutions or assessing Canadian children and/or youth. Articles retrieved from MEDLINE, CINAHL and Scopus by March 2021 were organized according to eight priority areas: health, well-being and development; outdoor play environments; safety and outdoor play; cross-sectoral connections; equity, diversity and inclusion; professional development; Indigenous Peoples and land-based outdoor play; and COVID-19. Within each priority, study design and measurement method were tallied.

Results: Of the 275 articles included, the most common priority area was health, well-being and development (n = 239). The least common priority areas were COVID-19 (n = 9) and Indigenous Peoples and land-based outdoor play (n = 14). Cross-sectional studies were the most common; the least common were rapid reviews. Sample sizes varied from one parent’s reflections to 999 951 data points from health databases. More studies used subjective than objective measurement methods. Across priorities, physical health was the most examined outcome, and mental/emotional development the least.

Conclusion: A wealth of knowledge on outdoor play in Canada has been produced since 2015. Further research is needed on the relationship between outdoor play and mental/emotional development among children and youth.

Keywords: outcomes research, healthy lifestyle, well-being, child health, priorities

The full article can be found here.