The purpose of this study was to test a model of overall activity in older adults. It was hypothesized that (a) mental and physical health directly influence sell-efficacy expectations; (b) mental and physical health, age, and self-efficacy expectations influence outcome expectations; and (c) all of these variables directly or indirectly influence overall activity. The sample included 175 older adults living in a continuing care retirement community, and a one-time interview was conducted. The mean age of the participants was 86 ± 5.7 years, and the majority were Caucasian (n = 173, 99%), women (n = 136, 78%), and unmarried (widowed or single; n = 137, 78%). Seven of the 10 hypothesized paths were significant. The variables physical health, self-efficacy expectations. and outcome expectations directly influenced activity, and age and mental health indirectly influenced activity through self-efficacy and outcome expectations. The data fit the model, and combined, these variables accounted for 29% of the variance in activity.
The author is with the University of Maryland School of Nursing, Baltimore, MD 21201.