Older Australians and physical activity: measures, pervalence data, and issues

Robert Hill (2011). Older Australians and physical activity: measures, pervalence data, and issues MPhil Thesis, School of Human Movement Studies, The University of Queensland.

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Author Robert Hill
Thesis Title Older Australians and physical activity: measures, pervalence data, and issues
School, Centre or Institute School of Human Movement Studies
Institution The University of Queensland
Publication date 2011-10
Thesis type MPhil Thesis
Supervisor Prof Wendy Brown
Prof Richard Tinning
Total pages 90
Total black and white pages 90
Language eng
Subjects 111712 Health Promotion
111706 Epidemiology
Abstract/Summary ABSTRACT Objectives: Statements in the press attributed to physical activity (PA) researchers and, on occasion, in academic journals, suggest that one percentage or another of Australians ≥65 years of age are 'meeting guidelines' or are failing to do so. This study sought to determine the degree of reliability attributable to such statements by considering what constitutes 'meeting guidelines', how the prevalence of those meeting guidelines is estimated, how terms in the field of PA study are defined and used by researchers and understood by study participants, and to what extent published study results agree on prevalence estimates. Methods: While conducting, with the assistance of my primary adviser, a review of literature relevant to these concerns (described below), I joined two colleagues in a study of how four often-used measurement instruments functioned as tools for determining PA behaviours of Australians ≥65 years of age, assisted with the analysis of qualitative and quantitative data from the study, and participated in the writing of papers resulting from this work, three of which have been published. The objective of my literature review was to determine the proportion of older Australians (defined as ≥65 years of age) who accumulate 30 minutes of at least moderate intensity physical activity on most days each week, the minimum level recommended for gaining health benefits. To this end, I conducted a systematic review of scholarly journals published between 1 January 2000 and 5 October 2010. Results: Of 357 potentially relevant papers, 22 met the study criteria. In the 15 studies with samples >500, estimates of how many Australians ≥65 years were meeting guidelines ranged from 25.2% to 55%. Researchers who conducted these studies used varying definitions, measures, and age ranges of participants. Discussion: Because of the heterogeneity of samples, measures and definitions, it is not possible to estimate with confidence the proportion of older adults in Australia who meet current physical activity recommendations. Beyond measurement studies and literature review, questions about research techniques, including self-reports and more objective techniques for acquiring data, were considered. Recommendations for improvements in research methods and the reporting of data are offered.
Keyword physical activity, older Australians, guidelines, prevalence estimates, measurement, self-report data
Additional Notes No color pages. In landscape, pages 33-50

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Created: Wed, 21 Mar 2012, 13:32:44 EST by Robert Hill on behalf of Library - Information Access Service