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Latin Dance Effects on Cardiorespiratory Fitness and Physical Function in Middle-Aged and Older Latino Adults

Omar Lopez, Navin Kaushal, Michelle A. Jaldin, and David X. Marquez

We tested if a dance trial yielded improvements in physical function and cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) in middle-aged/older Latino adults. Physical activity was assessed using the Community Healthy Activities Model Program for Seniors, physical function with the Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB) protocol, and estimated CRF with the Jurca nonexercise test model. Multivariate analysis of covariance models found significant change in SPPB protocol total scores, F(1, 329) = 4.23, p = .041, and CRF, F(1, 329) = 5.16, p = .024, between the two study arms in favor of the dance group. Mediation models found moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity to mediate to mediate between group and SPPB scores (β = 0.054, 95% confidence interval [0.0142, 0.1247]). Moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity and total physical activity were found to partially mediate between group and CRF (β = 0.02, 95% confidence interval [−0.0261, 0.0751]), with the direct pathway no longer being significant (p > .05). This provides support for Latin dance programs to have an effect on SPPB protocol and CRF.

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Physical Activity of Urban Community-Dwelling Older Latino Adults

David X. Marquez, Ruby Hoyem, Louis Fogg, Eduardo E. Bustamante, Beth Staffileno, and JoEllen Wilbur

Background:

To date, little is known about the physical activity (PA) levels and commonly reported modes of PA of older Latinos, and this information is critical to developing interventions for this population. The purpose of the current study was to examine PA assessed by self-report and accelerometer and to assess the influence of acculturation, gender, and age on the PA of urban community-dwelling older Latino adults.

Methods:

Participants were self-identified Latinos, primarily women (73%), and individuals aged 50 to 59 (31%), 60 to 69 (30%), and 70+ (39%). PA was measured with an accelerometer and the Community Healthy Activity Model Program for Seniors (CHAMPS) PA questionnaire.

Results:

Men reported engaging in, and objectively participated in, significantly more minutes of moderate/vigorous PA than women, but women reported greater light intensity household PA. Latinos aged 50 to 59 engaged in significantly more accelerometer-assessed PA than Latinos aged 60 to 69 and 70+, respectively. The majority of participants did not meet the PA Guidelines for Americans. No differences in PA were demonstrated by acculturation level. Older Latino men and women reported walking and dancing as modes of leisure PA.

Conclusions:

These findings suggest PA interventions should be targeted toward older Latinos, taking into account gender and age.

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Combined Effects of Sedentary Behavior and Moderate-to-Vigorous Physical Activity on Cardiovascular Health in Older, Community-Dwelling Latinos

Shannon Halloway, JoEllen Wilbur, Michael E. Schoeny, Pamela A. Semanik, and David X. Marquez

This study examined the combined effects of sedentary behavior and moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) on cardiovascular health in older Latinos. In a cross-sectional sample of 147 older, community-dwelling Latinos, time spent in sedentary behavior and MVPA were obtained using accelerometers. Analyses examined the effects of a measure of physical activity that combined levels of sedentary behavior (± 10 daily hours) and MVPA (< 30, 30–150, or > 150 weekly minutes) on cardiovascular health outcomes (blood pressure, BMI, waist circumference, cardiorespiratory fitness). Results suggest that cardiovascular health benefits of MVPA on BMI (p = .005), waist circumference (p = .002), and cardiorespiratory fitness (p = .012) may depend on a participant’s level of sedentary behavior. For all three, health benefits of 30–150 weekly minutes of MVPA were found only for those without excessive sedentary behavior (≥ 10 hr). Sedentary behavior may negatively impact cardiovascular health despite moderate participation in MVPA. Health guidelines should suggest reducing sedentary behavior while increasing MVPA.

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Active or Sedentary? Objectively Measured Physical Activity of Latinos and Implications for Intervention

David X. Marquez, Eduardo E. Bustamante, Edward McAuley, and Dawn E. Roberts

Background:

Latinos have the lowest leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) rates. However, measurement of only LTPA might underestimate total physical activity. This study compares the objective physical activity of Latinos reporting high or low levels of LTPA and also compares gender differences.

Methods:

Data were obtained from 148 Latinos (n = 83 women, n = 65 men). Freedson cut points were employed to determine daily minutes of activity.

Results:

Latinos reporting high LTPA engaged in more daily minutes of vigorous and very vigorous activity than Latinos reporting low LTPA (P values < .05). There was no difference in daily minutes of moderate-intensity activity (P = .12), with both groups of Latinos meeting Centers for Disease Control and Prevention/American College of Sports Medicine guidelines. Men engaged in more daily minutes of moderate activity than women (P < .01).

Conclusions:

Many Latinos met physical activity guidelines even when reporting low levels of LTPA. Future studies should determine whether equivalent health benefits are achieved by meeting guidelines through LTPA and non-LTPA.

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Physical Activity and Health Equity for Middle-Aged and Older Adults

David X. Marquez, Michelle A. Jaldin, Miguel Negrete, Melicia C. Whitt-Glover, and Crystal M. Glover

Physical activity (PA) has been associated with a multitude of beneficial mental and physical outcomes. It is well documented, however, that there are health disparities and inequities for segments of the population, especially as related to PA. Engagement of traditionally minoritized populations into research is essential for justice in health. We discuss a community engagement model that can be used for recruiting and retaining traditionally minoritized populations into PA research, and then we go into three major ethnic/racial groups in the United States: Latinos, African Americans, and Asian Americans. Background information of each group, cultural values that play a role in health for each of the groups, and research demonstrating how culture plays a role in the formation and implementation of PA interventions in these groups is presented.

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Building Community: Stakeholder Perspectives on Walking in Malls and Other Venues

Basia Belza, Christina E. Miyawaki, Peg Allen, Diane K. King, David X. Marquez, Dina L. Jones, Sarah Janicek, Dori Rosenberg, and David R. Brown

Mall walking has been a popular physical activity for decades. However, little is known about why mall managers support these programs or why adults choose to walk. Our study aim was to describe mall walking programs from the perspectives of walkers, managers, and leaders. Twenty-eight walkers, 16 walking program managers, and six walking program leaders from five states participated in a telephone or in-person semi-structured interview (N = 50). Interview guides were developed using a social-ecological model. Interviews were recorded, transcribed verbatim, and analyzed thematically. All informants indicated satisfaction with their program and environmental features. Differences in expectations were noted in that walkers wanted a safe, clean, and social place whereas managers and leaders felt a need to provide programmatic features. Given the favorable walking environments in malls, there is an opportunity for public health professionals, health care organizations, and providers of aging services to partner with malls to promote walking.

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Safe, Affordable, Convenient: Environmental Features of Malls and Other Public Spaces Used by Older Adults for Walking

Diane K. King, Peg Allen, Dina L. Jones, David X. Marquez, David R. Brown, Dori Rosenberg, Sarah Janicek, Laila Allen, and Basia Belza

Background:

Midlife and older adults use shopping malls for walking, but little research has examined mall characteristics that contribute to their walkability.

Methods:

We used modified versions of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)-Healthy Aging Research Network (HAN) Environmental Audit and the System for Observing Play and Recreation in Communities (SOPARC) tool to systematically observe 443 walkers in 10 shopping malls. We also observed 87 walkers in 6 community-based nonmall/nongym venues where older adults routinely walked for physical activity.

Results:

All venues had public transit stops and accessible parking. All malls and 67% of nonmalls had wayfinding aids, and most venues (81%) had an established circuitous walking route and clean, well-maintained public restrooms (94%). All venues had level floor surfaces, and one-half had benches along the walking route. Venues varied in hours of access, programming, tripping hazards, traffic control near entrances, and lighting.

Conclusions:

Despite diversity in location, size, and purpose, the mall and nonmall venues audited shared numerous environmental features known to promote walking in older adults and few barriers to walking. Future research should consider programmatic features and outreach strategies to expand the use of malls and other suitable public spaces for walking.

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Regular Latin Dancing and Health Education May Improve Cognition of Late Middle-Aged and Older Latinos

David X. Marquez, Robert Wilson, Susan Aguiñaga, Priscilla Vásquez, Louis Fogg, Zhi Yang, JoEllen Wilbur, Susan Hughes, and Charles Spanbauer

Disparities exist between Latinos and non-Latino Whites in cognitive function. Dance is culturally appropriate and challenges individuals physically and cognitively, yet the impact of regular dancing on cognitive function in older Latinos has not been examined. A two-group pilot trial was employed among inactive, older Latinos. Participants (N = 57) participated in the BAILAMOS© dance program or a health education program. Cognitive test scores were converted to z-scores and measures of global cognition and specific domains (executive function, episodic memory, working memory) were derived. Results revealed a group × time interaction for episodic memory (p < .05), such that the dance group showed greater improvement in episodic memory than the health education group. A main effect for time for global cognition (p < .05) was also demonstrated, with participants in both groups improving. Structured Latin dance programs can positively influence episodic memory, and participation in structured programs may improve overall cognition among older Latinos.

Open access

The Scientific Foundation for the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, 2nd Edition

Kenneth E. Powell, Abby C. King, David M. Buchner, Wayne W. Campbell, Loretta DiPietro, Kirk I. Erickson, Charles H. Hillman, John M. Jakicic, Kathleen F. Janz, Peter T. Katzmarzyk, William E. Kraus, Richard F. Macko, David X. Marquez, Anne McTiernan, Russell R. Pate, Linda S. Pescatello, and Melicia C. Whitt-Glover

Background: The 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines Advisory Committee Scientific Report provides the evidence base for the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, 2nd Edition. Methods: The 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines Advisory Committee addressed 38 questions and 104 subquestions selected for their public health relevance, potential to inform public policies and programs, maturity of the relevant science, and applicability to the general US population. Rigorous systematic literature searches and literature reviews were performed using standardized methods. Results: Newly described benefits of physical activity include reduced risk of excessive weight gain in children and adults, incidence of 6 types of cancer, and fall-related injuries in older people. Physical activity is associated with enhanced cognitive function and mental health across the life span, plus improved mental health and physical function. There is no threshold that must be exceeded before benefits begin to accrue; the accrual is most rapid for the least active individuals. Sedentary time is directly associated with elevated risk of all-cause and cardiovascular mortality, incident cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes, and selected cancer sites. A wide range of intervention strategies have demonstrated success in increasing physical activity. Conclusion: The 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines Advisory Committee Scientific Report provides compelling new evidence to inform physical activity recommendations, practice, and policy.