Perceived Barriers to Physical Activity among Older Australians

in Journal of Aging and Physical Activity
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In a cross-sectional survey, older Australians (N = 402) were asked to report their physical activity habits and the 3 main barriers to more physical activity. Active and inactive men and women differed only in how many reported being sufficiently active or that their health was too poor to be more active. Six barriers were reported by more than 10% of inactive men and women: “already active enough,” “have an injury or disability,” “poor health,” “too old,” “don't have enough time,” and “I'm not the sporty type.” Insufficient time was identified by significantly fewer respondents as age increased. More respondents 65–70+ years old identified poor health as a barrier than did those 60–64. The proportion who had an injury or disability decreased from 60–64 to 65–69 and increased markedly among those 70+. Programs for older adults should take into account the age of the target group and the limitations imposed by poor health or disability.

Booth is with the New South Wales Centre for the Advancement of Adolescent Health, the Children's Hospital at Westmead, Westmead, NSW 2145, Australia. Bauman is with the School of Community Medicine, University of New South Wales, Sidney, NSW 2052, Australia. Owen is with the Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences, University of Wollongong, 2522, Australia.

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