Correlates of Physical Activity Among People With Disabilities in South Korea: A Multilevel Modeling Approach

in Journal of Physical Activity and Health
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Background:

The purpose of this study was to examine the correlates of physical activity (PA) with personal and environmental factors among people with disabilities in South Korea.

Methods:

Data from the 2011 National Survey for Physical Activity and Exercise for the Disabled, conducted by Korea Sports Association for the Disabled, was used (n = 1478). The personal characteristics (age, gender, occupation, types of disabilities, family income) and the numbers of public PA-related facilities (welfare center, public indoor gym, and public outdoor facilities) and social sports/exercise clubs for people with disabilities across 16 local areas were also obtained. Hierarchical generalized linear model was used to examine subjectively measured PA in relation to personal and environmental factors.

Results:

The likelihood of engaging in PA was significantly lower for women with disabilities. People with hearing and intellectual disabilities were less likely to engage in PA compared with those with physical disabilities. The availability of sports/exercise clubs for people with disabilities was the only environmental factor that was significantly associated with PA.

Conclusions:

These findings suggest the need of systematic intervention strategies based upon personal characteristics of people with disabilities. Further public efforts to promote sports/exercise club activities should be encouraged in this population.

Kim (youngdeok.kim@ttu.edu) is with the Dept of Health, Exercise, and Sport Sciences, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, TX. Cho is with the Dept of Adapted Physical Activity, Korea Nazareth University, Cheonan, Chungnam, South Korea; and was at Middle Tennessee State University as a visiting professor supported by Korea Nazarene University, South Korea, during part of the study. Fuller is with the Dept of Psychology, Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro, TN. Kang is with the Dept of Health and Human Performance, Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro, TN.