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Mirja Hirvensalo, Päivi Lampinen and Taina Rantanen

This study examined changes in involvement in physical exercise and the motives for and obstacles to participation over an 8-year period in a representative sample of senior residents of Jyväskylä. Finland. The participants were noninslitulionalized seniors age 65-84 years at baseline in 1988. The most common form of physical exercise was walking for fitness. In men, participation in supervised exercise classes and performing calisthenic exercises at home increased over the follow-up. In women, physical exercise generally declined. The most important reason quoted for nonparticipation at both baseline and follow-up was poor health (65-88%). Among those who reported participation in supervised physical exercise, the most important motives were health promotion (80%) and social reasons (40-50%). The main obstacles were poor health (19-38%) and lack of interest (28-26%). It is an important challenge to remove obstacles to participation in physical activity in old age and to give older people every opportunity to get involved.

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Kasper Mäkelä, Mirja Hirvensalo and Peter Whipp

One of the cause’s célèbre in the field of education has been teacher attrition; Physical education (PE) is no different. Some PE teachers are leaving the profession because they encounter stress and dissatisfaction in their profession. The purpose of this study is to determine the aspects that keep PE teachers happy and remaining in the profession. Seven job satisfaction factors were identified with principal component analysis and logistic regression models used to study the likelihood of teachers’ intention to stay in the profession. Those PE teachers who intended to stay in teaching were more satisfied with the resources, work community, their own expertise, recognition of teaching, manageability of work, students, as well as the quality of work. It was also found that satisfaction and commitment to teaching were strong predictors for staying in the profession. For early career teachers, manageability and quality of work were the factors that were strongly related to their intention to stay in the profession.

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Minna Rasinaho, Mirja Hirvensalo, Raija Leinonen, Taru Lintunen and Taina Rantanen

The purpose of this study was to investigate what older adults with severe, moderate, or no mobility limitation consider motives for and barriers to engaging in physical exercise. Community-dwelling adults (N = 645) age 75–81 years completed a questionnaire about their motives for and barriers to physical exercise and answered interview questions on mobility limitation. Those with severely limited mobility more often reported poor health, fear and negative experiences, lack of company, and an unsuitable environment as barriers to exercise than did those with no mobility limitation. They also accentuated disease management as a motive for exercise, whereas those with no or moderate mobility limitation emphasized health promotion and positive experiences related to exercise. Information about differences in motives for and barriers to exercise among people with and without mobility limitation helps tailor support systems that support engagement in physical activity among older adults.

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Mirja Hannele Hirvensalo, Jiska Cohen-Mansfield, Shlomit Rind and Jack Guralnik

Prescribing the correct exercise program is a challenge for older adults with multiple physiological impairments. The authors evaluated an assessment instrument that incorporates results of multiple categories of impairment, including strength, balance, gait, vision, and cognitive function. The physical therapist made judgments on the relative impact of 9 different impairments on specific exercises and on the total impact of all impairments on particular exercises. In a cohort age 75–85 y, functional limitations, impaired balance, pain, and low physical endurance were estimated to have the largest impact on the ability to carry out exercise activities, primarily walking, stair climbing, balance exercises, and stationary bicycling. The assessments revealed that the ability to exercise was related to objective measures of function, indicating that the therapist incorporated such objective measures into the impairment-impact rating. The impairment-impact assessment facilitates creating individualized exercise prescriptions for individuals with impairments.

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Risto Telama, Xiaolin Yang, Mirja Hirvensalo and Olli Raitakari

The aim of this study was to investigate how participation in organized competitive youth sport predicts adult physical activity. A random sample of 2,309 boys and girls ages 9–18 years participated in the Cardiovascular Risk in Young Finns Study in 1980, and 1,606 (70%) of them again in 2001. Physical activity was measured using a short, validated questionnaire. The results showed that participation in youth sport, and persistent participation in particular, significantly predicted adult physical activity. Participation in sport competitions increased the probability of high activity in adulthood more among males than females.

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Lotta Palmberg, Erja Portegijs, Taina Rantanen, Eeva Aartolahti, Anne Viljanen, Mirja Hirvensalo and Merja Rantakokko

Background: Many older people report a willingness to increase outdoor physical activity (PA), but no opportunities for it, a situation termed as unmet PA need. The authors studied whether lower neighborhood mobility and PA precede the development of unmet PA need. Methods: Community-dwelling 75- to 90-year-old people (n = 700) were interviewed annually for 2 years. Unmet PA need, neighborhood mobility, and PA were self-reported. In addition, accelerometer-based step counts were assessed among a subgroup (n = 156). Results: Logistic regression analyses revealed that lower baseline neighborhood mobility (odds ratio 3.02, 95% confidence interval [1.86, 4.90] vs. daily) and PA (odds ratio 4.37, 95% confidence interval [2.62, 7.29] vs. high) were associated with the development of unmet PA need over 2 years. The participants with higher step counts had a lower risk for unmet PA need (odds ratio 0.68, 95% confidence interval, [0.54, 0.87]). Conclusion: Maintaining higher PA levels and finding solutions for daily outdoor mobility, especially for those with declines in health, may protect from the development of unmet PA need.

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Kaisa Kaseva, Taina Hintsa, Jari Lipsanen, Laura Pulkki-Råback, Mirka Hintsanen, Xiaolin Yang, Mirja Hirvensalo, Nina Hutri-Kähönen, Olli Raitakari, Liisa Keltikangas-Järvinen and Tuija Tammelin

Background:

Parents’ physical activity associates with their children’s physical activity. Prospective designs assessing this association are rare. This study examined how parents’ physical activity was associated with their children’s physical activity from childhood to middle adulthood in a 30-year prospective, population-based setting.

Methods:

Participants (n = 3596) were from the ongoing Cardiovascular Risk in Young Finns study started in 1980. Participants’ physical activity was self-reported at 8 phases from 1980 to 2011, and their parents’ physical activity at 1980. Analyses were adjusted for a set of health-related covariates assessed from 1980 to 2007.

Results:

High levels of mothers’ and fathers’ physical activity were systematically associated with increased levels of their children’s physical activity until offspring’s age of 24. Longitudinal analyses conducted from 1980 to 2011 showed that higher levels of parents’ physical activity were associated with increased levels of physical activity within their offspring until midlife, but the association between parents’ and their children’s physical activity weakened when participants aged (P < .05). Covariate adjustment did not attenuate the association.

Conclusions:

This study suggests that parents’ physical activity assessed in their offspring’s childhood contributes favorably to offspring’s physical activity from childhood to middle age.

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Xiaolin Yang, Irinja Lounassalo, Anna Kankaanpää, Mirja Hirvensalo, Suvi P. Rovio, Asko Tolvanen, Stuart J.H. Biddle, Harri Helajärvi, Sanna H. Palomäki, Kasper Salin, Nina Hutri-Kähönen, Olli T. Raitakari and Tuija H. Tammelin

Background: The purpose of this study was to examine trajectories of leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) and television-viewing (TV) time and their associations in adults over 10 years. Methods: The sample comprised 2934 participants (men, 46.0%) aged 24–39 years in 2001 and they were followed up for 10 years. LTPA and TV time were assessed using self-report questionnaires in 2001, 2007, and 2011. Longitudinal LTPA and TV-time trajectories and their interactions were analyzed with mixture modeling. Results: Three LTPA (persistently highly active, 15.8%; persistently moderately active, 60.8%; and persistently low active, 23.5%) and 4 TV time (consistently low, 38.6%; consistently moderate, 48.2%; consistently high, 11.7%; and consistently very high, 1.5%) trajectory classes were identified. Persistently highly active women had a lower probability of consistently high TV time than persistently low-active women (P = .02), whereas men who were persistently highly active had a higher probability of consistently moderate TV time and a lower probability of consistently low TV time than their persistently low-active counterparts (P = .03 and P = .01, respectively). Conclusions: Maintaining high LTPA levels were accompanied by less TV over time in women, but not in men. The associations were partially explained by education, body mass index, and smoking.