Can living in the right place make you more athletic? Research is supporting the idea that it absolutely can. The American Fitness Index recently released a report that ranks the most athletic cities in the United States. They used data like diabetes rates, obesity, the percentage of the population that smokes, and various other environmental factors like the number of parks and recreation options to determine the order of the list. Here are the top 10 fittest cities in America.
- San Jose, California
San Jose made the list due to the amount of cash it has invested in recreational activities for its citizens like new tennis courts, pools and baseball fields.
- Boston, Massachusetts
The citizens of Boston are getting serious about getting healthy. A high number of farmer’s markets have popped up all over town in the past several years, promoting healthy eating. The city has also invested in more parks, and the population boasts an impressive number of people who are decreasing diabetes and cardiovascular disease rates.
- Seattle, Washington
More and more folks are walking, cycling and using public transportation to get to work in Seattle. As a result, death rates attributed to heart disease and diabetes are declining, making Seattle number eight on the list.
- Portland, Oregon
The city of Portland is spending more money on public parks, and the citizens are walking or biking to work in greater numbers.
- Denver, Colorado
In the last five years, Denver has seen a steadily decreasing death rate attributed to cardiovascular disease. This, combined with the growing number of farmer’s markets and investment in city parks, has made Denver the sixth most athletic city in the United States.
- Sacramento, California
The number of parks, playgrounds and other recreational places throughout Sacramento put it at number 5 on the list.
- San Francisco, California
In the last five years, San Francisco has drastically reduced the number of its citizens that smoke and die from diabetes and heart disease. Plus, healthy eating is on the rise thanks to the enormous growth rate of farmer’s markets.
- San Diego, California
Decreasing asthma rates and lower diabetes and heart-related deaths, combined with a very high investment per capita in parklands landed San Diego at number three on the list.
- Minneapolis, Minnesota
The number of farmer’s markets has increased drastically in recent years, but really puts Minneapolis high on the list is the fact that more than 90 percent of its citizens are only a 10-minute walk from a park or recreation area.
- Washington, D.C.
The nation’s capital is the fittest city in America. There are almost too many public parks and farmer’s markets to even count, and the decreasing diabetes rate helped Washington D.C. secure the number one spot.